US energy storage developer Beacon Power has been awarded a $5m grant towards the construction of a 20MW flywheel storage facility in Hazle Township, Pennsylvania. The development is expected to cost $53m and it has also been awarded a $24m smart grid stimulus grant from the US Department of Energy. Construction is set to begin later this year.
Lou Barletta, US Congressman, said, ‘Storing energy and putting it back into the grid when it’s needed could be a game-changer as we try to reduce the cost of energy. Additionally, projects like this will bring significant economic, environmental, and efficiency benefits to Pennsylvania’s power grid. It will also create new jobs and boost the local economy.’
The site in Pennsylvania will use a similar design to one now being operated in New York state that was opened in July. Beacon has announced second quarter revenues up more than 200 per cent on the same period last year.
Updating transmission infrastructure is seen as a key aspect of developing a ‘smart grid’ and of reducing energy wastage. In the UK, there are plans to spend £10bn on this process until 2015 and investment into smart grids is expected to reach $171.3bn in Asia by 2017.
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