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Cryo Chamber

The First Flywheel Power Storage Plant?

With the rise in renewable energy sources comes a corresponding need for reliable power storage devices–all that solar power gathered during the day needs to still be available at night, after all. Enter Beacon Power’s $69 million flywheel storage plant. The facility harnesses 200 flywheels that store power from natural gas plants as kinetic energy and release it in short bursts as needed.

The plant, currently under construction in Stephentown, New York, will be the first ever large-scale storage facility to replace batteries with flywheels. And it has just been given the seal of approval by the Department of Energy, which this week offered up a $43 million loan guarantee to Beacon.

Flywheel technology has been used before, albeit on a much smaller scale. Past installations have harnessed up to one megawatt of power, but Beacon’s plant will be able to store 20 megawatts, or enough to supply 10% of New York’s frequency-regulation needs on any given day. - [source]

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