Evolving China’s Energy Storage Landscape: Energy Vault’s Gravity Energy Storage Systems
Energy Vault, a leader in grid-scale energy storage solutions, has announced the deployment of five new EVx™ gravity energy storage systems (GESS) in China. These systems, developed in partnership with China Tianying Inc. (CNTY), will bring the total EVx deployments in China to seven, with a combined capacity of 3.26 GWh and a project scope exceeding $1 billion.
The Rudong EVx system, which is under final commissioning, will mark a major milestone as the world’s first commercial, grid-scale gravity energy storage system. The 25 MW, 100 MWh system offers a compelling alternative to traditional pumped hydro plants, which currently dominate about 90% of the global energy storage market.
The strategic value of gravity energy storage technology in China cannot be understated. As the largest energy storage market in the world, China is actively pursuing the integration of renewable energy sources into its power grid. Energy Vault’s gravity energy storage systems offer a long technical life, enabling intermittent wind and solar power generation to replace fossil fuel-based generation more easily. This will further accelerate China’s clean energy transition and help the country achieve its net carbon-neutral goals.
The EVx GESS systems provide several advantages over existing storage technologies. Similar to pumped hydro, Energy Vault’s technology offers a longer technical life, improved project scalability, higher round-trip efficiency, and enhanced safety features. Additionally, the systems utilize locally sourced materials such as soil, coal ash, concrete debris, and mining tailings, reducing the environmental impact and promoting circular economy principles.
China’s energy policies mandate that renewable energy plants integrate storage capacity equivalent to 20% of their nameplate generation capacity, with a minimum of 2-4 hours of storage duration. Historically, lithium-ion batteries have been the primary storage technology used alongside pumped hydro in China. However, Energy Vault’s gravity energy storage systems present a viable and sustainable alternative that aligns with China’s renewable energy goals.
Q: What is the Rudong EVx system? A: The Rudong EVx system is the world’s first commercial, grid-scale gravity energy storage system that offers an alternative to traditional long-life energy storage assets like pumped hydro plants.
Q: How many EVx deployments are planned for China? A: There are currently seven planned EVx deployments in China, with a total capacity of 3.26 GWh and a project scope exceeding $1 billion.
Q: What are the advantages of Energy Vault’s gravity energy storage systems? A: Energy Vault’s systems offer a longer technical life, improved scalability, higher round-trip efficiency, and enhanced safety features compared to existing technologies. They also utilize locally sourced materials and promote circular economy principles.
Q: Why is gravity energy storage technology valuable in China? A: China is the largest energy storage market in the world and is actively integrating renewable energy sources into its power grid. Gravity energy storage technology provides a long-lasting and sustainable solution that aligns with China’s clean energy goals.