Flywheel manufacturer Amber Kinetics has hired a new senior vice president of manufacturing and operations as the company growth spurt continues.
US flywheel company Amber Kinetics has appointed Wei-Tai Kwok as chief operating officer as it expands its senior executive team.
One of Kwok’s first responsibilities will be to establish the company’s first production-scale manufacturing plant— the details of which are still under wraps.
“Wei-Tai Kwok comes to us at an important time in our accelerating growth path,” commented Ed Chiao, the firm’s founder and CEO.
“Amber Kinetics continues to attract top talent who can help us achieve our goal of commercializing our cost-effective, breakthrough four-hour flywheel energy storage technology at prices that make our innovative storage solution more affordable than fossil fuels.
We are excited that Wei-Tai has joined us as we begin to serve global customers.”
Kwok said: “Coming from the solar energy industry I have been on the lookout for a viable, large-scale energy storage technology that can be tapped into when the sun isn’t shining and the wind isn’t blowing.
“For a 100% renewable energy future, which I believe we will achieve in our lifetimes, we must develop commercially viable, scalable, safe and low-cost energy storage solutions like the technology Amber Kinetics is innovating.”
A flooded lead-acid battery will be part of flywheel manufacturer Beacon Power’s latest 320kW hybrid energy storage project in Alaska.
The battery in the existing utility owned system is being used to help prove out the control system and application concepts of the Energy Storage System (ESS) in Anchorage.
The Republic of Ireland has been chosen to house the first grid-connected 320 kW hybrid battery and flywheel project in Europe.
Energy storage company GKN Hybrid Power (GKN) and bus manufacturer Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) are to collaborate on the integration of flywheels in hybrid buses.
Initially, ADL will fit 250 flywheels from GKN in the company’s hybrid bus fleet. The partnership of the two UK-based firms is also aimed to enter international markets together.
The Gyrodrive electric flywheel hybrid system uses a magnetically loaded high-speed carbon-fibre flywheel to store the energy generated by a bus as it slows down to stop and then uses the stored energy to power a GKN EVO electric motor.
The Gyrodrive system is designed to last for the life of the bus eliminating the need for battery changes while offering lower whole-life costs than other hybrid alternatives, according to GKN.
ADL will introduce the low emission technology to bus fleets in London and Oxford, but anticipates rapid deployment across the UK in the next few years.
“This alliance with GKN introduces a new dynamic to the market place, courtesy of a lower cost solution that provides significant fuel and greenhouse gas reductions, coupled with reliability and durability,” said Colin Robertson, CEO of ADL.
Earlier this year, GKN aquired Williams Hybrid Power from Williams Grand Prix Engineering and formed GKN Hybrid Power.
ABB is to deploy an integrated commercial flywheel system on Kodiak Island in Alaska, US.
The flywheel system, integrated with a battery, is aimed to enable the integration of renewable energy from an expanded wind farm to its microgrid and to address stability challenges.
UK transport company Wrightbus has installed Lancashire-based Torotrak’s Flybrid flywheel kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) in a bus prototype.
KERS captures and stores energy that is otherwise lost during vehicle deceleration events. When the vehicle slows down, kinetic energy is recovered and stored by accelerating a flywheel. By gathering speed, energy is released from the flywheel back into the driveline.
Energy storage company Beacon Power has estimated that it will build 40MW of energy storage systems by the end of 2015.
Beacon Power CEO Barry Britt said in a Bloomberg interview that the demand for flywheel storage will double over the next years due to the increase of renewable power plants that raise the need for grid stabilising.
Mainstream Renewable Power (MRP) is to test 2MW of energy storage at a 10MW wind farm in Ireland.
MRP will assess the commercial availability of integrating wind generation with flywheels, synchronous condensers and batteries as well as operating the system in the Irish Single Electricity Market. The Irish state agency Enterprise Ireland will assist the “Wind-Storage Hybrid Study”.
Toronto-based energy storage developer NStor has installed a 2MW grid-connected flywheel energy storage facility in Ontario, Canada – a first for the country.
The facility will provide service matched regulation to Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO).