The South Australian Government has approved the development of Canadian company Hydrostor’s $30 million advanced compressed air energy storage (A-CAES) facility near Strathalbyn at the Angas Zinc Mine.
Angas A-CAES is set to be the first facility of its kind in Australia. It will process excess electricity generated from solar and wind farms to run a compressor and produce heated, compressed air which will be stored underground. The compressed air will then be released to drive a generator and produce electricity when the demand is high on the electricity grid.
“This is another step in the transition of South Australia’s energy system by the integration of renewable energy into the grid to deliver cheaper, more reliable and cleaner energy.
“A-CAES is a new energy storage technology for Australia that provides synchronous inertia, load shifting and frequency regulation to support grid security and reliability,” Energy and Mining Minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan said.
The multi-million dollar project will involve repurposing the old Angas Zinc Mine to accommodate the 5MW / 10MWh A-CAES facility. Works will include transforming the mine into an underground - up to 240 metres below ground - air storage cavern utilising Hydrostor’s innovative design in order to achieve an emission-free energy storage.
Project location (source: Hydrostor)
This project is supported by the State Government’s Renewable Technology Fund with a $3 million investment together with a $6 million investment from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).
The project is anticipated to support up to 40 jobs during the construction phase and four ongoing positions over the facility’s 30 year lifespan.
“We’re excited to demonstrate the significant benefits of adding our emission-free storage solution, creating jobs and helping South Australia develop a stronger electricity grid at lower cost to consumers,” Hydrostor CEO Curtis VanWalleghem said.
The Angas A-CAES project is going to be located approximately 50 kilometres southeast of Adelaide and it is expected to begin operations in 2020.
Hydrostor has established an office in Adelaide for the delivery of this project and the Department for Trade, Tourism and Investment has supported this move.
“Hydrostor is the latest in a line of high profile, international renewables companies to set up operations in this state,” Trade Tourism and Investment Minister David Ridgway said.
Receive the latest industry news and project updates straight to your inbox by subscribing to the PlantMiner blog today.