Williams Advanced Engineering receives award to develop and demonstrate static flywheel energy storage technology for grid stabilization
Williams Advanced Engineering, the division of Williams that commercializes Formula One-based technologies, has been awarded a grant from the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund to develop flywheel-based energy storage systems for use in grid stabilization.
Up to £16 million (US$24 million) will be shared between 30 projects which have been awarded the grant under the first phase of the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund. The funding is part of a £35-million (US$52-million) fund announced in April 2012 that aims to encourage innovation in the low carbon sector, help bring a range of new and innovative low carbon products to market, create export opportunities and help the UK meet its carbon targets.
One of Williams Advanced Engineering’s key R&D projects is the development of flywheel-based energy storage systems. Originally pioneered by Williams for Grand Prix racing, this technology has since been adapted and introduced into a range of mobile applications outside of Formula One such as hybrid buses and Le Mans winning racing cars.
Williams is also developing powerful static flywheel systems for the rapid transit (metros, trams and monorails) and electric power stabilization sectors; it is the potential use of these static flywheel systems in an electric power grid stabilization role that has received funding from the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund. This technology can help smooth output from and increase penetration of intermittent renewable generation sources, provide fast response frequency regulation and short term demand peak shaving to help strengthen electricity grids.