Amber Kinetics, Inc. Smart Grid Demonstration Project

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The Amber Kinetics, Inc. Smart Grid Demonstration Project is a U.S. Department of Energy Smart Grid Demonstration Project which is based in Fremont, California.

Overview

Amber Kinetics is developing a flywheel system from sub-scale research prototype to full-scale mechanical flywheel battery and will conduct both a commercial-scale and a utility-scale demonstration. The goal is to deliver a cost-effective prototype flywheel system that can be grid connected and electrically charged and discharged. The system will have built-in sensing components that can determine frequency and voltage characteristics of the grid and can override the grid signal to manage the amount of electricity discharged. The flywheel stores energy in a spinning rotor that is connected to an electric motor that converts electrical energy into mechanical energy. To recover the energy the motor is electrically reversed and used as a generator to slow down the flywheel converting the mechanical energy back into electrical energy. Amber Kinetics will improve the traditional flywheel system by engineering breakthroughs in three areas, resulting in higher efficiency and radically reduced cost: magnetic bearings, low-cost rotor, and high-efficiency motor generator. This technology can also be used to optimize existing infrastructure.[2]

Equipment

  • Filament Winding Machine
  • Fiber Braiding Machine
  • CNC Milling Machine
  • CNC Laser Cutting Machine

Targeted Benefits

  • Green job creation
  • Electricity costs lowered
  • Renewable energy integration
  • U.S. energy security strengthened
  • Greenhouse gas emissions reduced

References

  1. ARRA Smart Grid Demonstration Projects
  2. Project Information Page