EnergyWatch

Concrete train to store energy in the US

Gravity and wind turbines will do the heavy lifting in new energy storage project Ares in California. The company claims that this new way of storing energy is cheaper and better for the environment than even hydropower.

Photo: ARES, PR

There are no limits for the imagination when energy engineers look for solutions concerning the global issue of energy storage. In the US state California, the company Ares (Advanced Rail Energy Storage System) is investigating one such solution.

The company is currently constructing a 9.2 kilometer railroad track outside of Bakersfield, California where the excess power from wind turbines and solar panels will drive a miniature train with weight of 300 tons. The power will push the heavy train up a hill stretching 640 meters from top to bottom. When demand nears production, the power supply to the small battery trains will stop and generators will convert the downhill trip into electricity.

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