ANU Engineers sink the pumped-hydro energy problem

Map of global potential locations for pumped-hydro energy storage
Monday 1 April 2019

The ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science Researchers have completed a global audit of 530,000 potential locations for pumped-hydro energy storage that can be used to support low-cost, secure, renewable electricity grids.

Dr Matthew Stocks, from the Research School of Electrical, Energy and Materials Engineering (RSEEME) said that the discovery has the potential to support a global 100 per cent renewable electricity grid, with the total storage capacity of the combined sites to be over 22 million Gigawatt-hours (GWh).

“Only a small fraction of the 530,000 potential sites we’ve identified would be needed to support a 100 per cent renewable global electricity system. We identified so many potential sites that much less than the best one per cent will be required,” said Dr Stocks.

“The perception has been there are limited sites for pumped hydro around the world, but we have found hundreds of thousands.”

The zero-emission grids would mainly rely on solar photovoltaic (PV) technology, with support from pumped-hydro storage and extra high voltage transmission between regions.

RSEEME Co-Researchers: Professor Andrew Blakers and Mr Bin Lu  

Read the entire article by ANU Media here


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