Energy Vault is the Swiss-based creator of gravity and kinetic energy-based, long-duration energy storage solutions. As one of the World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers of 2020, it’s reinventing the global methods of delivering reliable and sustainable electricity, and it has started this initiative in Biasca, Switzerland with an alternative to pumped-hydro.
Instead of using the traditional method of water and dams, Energy Vault uses concrete blocks and cranes to store clean energy. This unprecedented approach allows for renewable energy to be “dispatchable and competitive with fossil fuels all day, every day.”
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According to Energy Vault, the way it works is 35-ton composite bricks are lifted to create a tower, and energy is stored in the elevation gain. The bricks are then returned to the ground and the kinetic energy generated from the falling brick is turned back into electricity. An engineered control software ensures the proper placement of each brick.