The awareness for using renewable energy sources is increasing across the globe, and with it, decisions are needed to be made to figure out what natural resources can be exploited. However, every renewable source also has a constraint. Like solar panels cannot be used when its cloudy, hydro plants won’t work without rivers. An attempt has been made to make use of one of the most potent and constant forces on the earth, gravity. Energy Vault, a company based in California and Nevada, is offering an energy solution that is gravity-centric. The company has announced its first two clients as well; the power giant of India, Tata and the Mexican building materials company, CEMEX.
The company explained that the gravity towers are based on hydroelectricity but don’t need water for its operation. It uses ‘custom-made concrete bricks’ which will not degrade over time, as the company claims. The bricks are lifted when there is excess energy to go to the ground, and then they get a controlled drop when more power needs to be generated. Energy Vault claims that their system can produce between 10 to 35MWh. Tata has ordered a system which can deliver a complete 35 MWh. The system is not creating the power itself but is a way to store it.
Energy Vault claims that the round trips of a given brick are 90% efficient when it comes to the power use. The best part is that the gravity towers can be placed anywhere with open land and open sky. Robert Piconi, CEO of Energy Vault and co-founder, said, “The world needs rapidly scalable and sustainable energy storage solutions to meet one of the most urgent challenges – the need to decarbonize our energy generation – and we’re thrilled to launch Energy Vault’s unique technology to help solve this problem.”
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