Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Solar initiative includes Compressed Air Energy Storage

Science Foundation Arizona announced five new solar investments totaling $4 million and the opening of the Solar Technology Institute (STI).

One of the projects is Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES): Southwest Solar Technologies, the U.S. Geological Survey, UA and ASU are developing compressed air solar storage technology for use when the Sun is not shining. Other partners include Simmons, Nanovoltaix, and Eusthatia.

The basic idea is to use solar energy to pump air into some kind of geologic reservoir or void during the day, building up pressure, so that during the night (or other times the Sun is not shining), the pressurized air can be released to turn an electric generator. [right, compressed air energy storage in a limestone cavern. Credit, Sandia National Lab]

1 comment:

  1. Compressed air energy storage is an excellent venture to pursue. It's viable and responsible energy storage.

    Curious to hear if petroleum fields (oil sands and such) could be replaced with compressed air rather than the filler currently used.