Edinburgh Power: 15-metre Gravitricity battery at Leith Dock generates first power in bid to provide global green energy

A green energy project to create electricity from gravity has generated its first power at a work tower in Edinburgh.

Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 7:48 am
Updated Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 2:29 pm
The 15m-high lattice-work tower at Leith docks is part of a pioneering green energy storage project which will be able to provide emergency power in a matter of seconds (Photo: Peter Dibdin).

The 15m-high lattice-work tower at Leith docks is part of a pioneering green energy storage project which will be able to provide emergency power in a matter of seconds.

The giant battery acts by managing electricity coming from renewables and it is hoped that it will provide a cost-effective alternative to lithium-ion batteries.

Gravitricity – the company behind the battery – hopes it will make a global impact in sourcing energy.

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BBC Scotland has now reported that the £1 million battery – located in the quayside of Leith docks – has generated its first power.

Charlie Blair, Gravitricity managing director, told BBC Scotland: "This is not helping keep the lights of Scotland on, although it is grid-connected.

"If this technology is one that really makes a difference it's going to make a difference globally. It's going to keep the lights on in Africa, as they build the grid, just as much as it will in Europe."

The battery uses surplus power to lift weights which keep that energy "stored" until it is needed.

The electricity is then generated when these weights are released.

Hannah Chalmers – an energy expert from the University of Edinburgh said: "Energy storage technologies are quite new for our electricity system.

"We've not needed them so much in the past because conventional power plants have tended to come with storage in-built.

"But for wind farms and things like that, the storage doesn't come naturally so it's really helpful to have other systems that are able to provide storage."

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