As global awareness of the impacts of climate change increases, citizens are pushing their governments to enact more environmentally friendly energy policies and create innovative technologies to bring their cities into a sustainable future. Additionally, because of the interest in having independent energy sectors in the midst of geopolitical tensions, more countries are investing in sustainable energy sources – solar, wind, and geothermal energy, just to name a few. Solar power in particular has become a lot more popular in recent years.
In fact, as of 2020, 20% of all utility-scale energy grids in the United States were based on renewable energy sources. A growing number of communities are investing in renewable energy in order to lower their carbon footprints.
New Approaches for Renewable Energy Loom on the Horizon
It’s clear that there’s no stopping the transition to renewable energy, though the current oil and gas hegemony would beg to differ – according to Bailout Watch, the industry spent almost $15 million working to lobby against climate protective policies and renewable energy interests. Lawmakers are being told that renewable energy has too many unsolved problems, is too inefficient and expensive, and that the current technologies are fundamentally unable to support the high-energy needs of today’s urban population. And in some cases, they may be right – the sustainable energy sector needs innovative solutions to one of its biggest problems: storage.
While energy has been sourced from sustainable sources for decades, the ability to store the energy gained from these sources in a reliable, efficient, and environmentally sustainable manner is where governments run into obstacles. They are going to need to find solutions to these issues before they can create a truly reliable approach to sustainable energy.
This is the problem that Amber Kinetics set out to solve 13 years ago with their revolutionary flywheel technology, a type of Kinetic Energy Storage Solution (KESS). Their impressive pedigree, which has included multiple industry awards and contracts in countries around the world, has made them an industry leader in renewable resource storage. As the engineers of the world’s first and only long-duration, grid-scale flywheel energy storage system, Amber Kinetics has a mission to change the world of sustainable energy and make it more accessible to any city or corporation that hopes to transition to a greener future.
So how is Amber Kinetics storage solution different from batteries and plants that are also being used in the industry? For starters, the flywheel is a powerful device that is also simple and efficient – in reality, it’s a technology that has been used since ancient times. If you’ve ever wound up the wheels on a toy car to make it accelerate, then you’ve experienced the power of the flywheel. As energy from a primary source, like the sun or wind, enters the rotor attached to the flywheel, the flywheel begins to spin faster, creating kinetic energy -the energy of motion. When energy is extracted for use, the flywheel begins to slow down. The kinetic energy is translated into electrical energy that can then be used to fuel entire cities.
Amber Kinetics’ M32 model houses a large two-ton rotor attached to a flywheel that can store up to 10,000 kilowatt-hours of energy when combined with other units. That’s enough energy to power 350 houses for a day, just through one grid of flywheels. And because the flywheel is a purely mechanical storage solution, there are no chemicals involved as there are in traditional batteries. There is no risk of decay and corrosion that could contaminate the environment, leading to further problems. Instead, Amber Kinetics’ flywheel design doesn’t degrade, has a low cost of operation and maintenance, and is made out of easily recyclable materials, making them one of the most environmentally friendly and efficient storage solutions.
Renewable Energy is Becoming More Viable Due to New Advances
Though the titans of traditional energy will try their best to maintain a stronghold on the marketplace, through innovative design that prioritizes energy efficiency, cost, and sustainability, lawmakers and citizens realize the power of renewable energy. Thanks to pioneers in the field like Amber Kinetics, a brighter, greener future is ahead of us.