Babcock & Wilcox ("B&W") and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have signed an Intellectual Property Option Agreement that gives B&W field-limited exclusive rights to negotiate a licensing agreement that would allow it to market an advanced, particle-based thermal energy storage technology currently in development.
B&W is part of NREL’s Duration Addition to electricitY Storage (DAYS) Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) team, which is developing an innovative electric particle heater, pressurized fluidized-bed heat exchanger, a long-term thermal energy storage system that stores energy up to 100 hours, and other technologies to allow power producers to store solar or wind energy to generate continuous, reliable, grid-scale power. B&W’s proven and established pressurized fluidized-bed boiler technology is an ideal choice for advancing this technology to commercial operations.
“High-capacity, long-term energy storage is essential for renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power to become widespread, baseload power options,” said B&W Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kenny Young. “B&W’s fluidized-bed heat exchanger will be able to generate up to 135 megawatts of power for up to 100 hours (four days) from stored clean thermal energy with zero CO2 emissions. By facilitating long-term storage of zero-carbon, renewable energy, this technology enables power producers to deliver power to the grid 24-hours a day, including during periods of peak demand, or when solar or wind are not optimal conditions.”
“We see tremendous global commercial applications for our fluidized-bed heat exchanger and are pleased to have the opportunity to negotiate a licensing agreement with NREL and expand B&W’s technology for use in new, innovative energy storage platforms,” Young said.
B&W and NREL are also engaged in discussions to develop a prototype heat exchanger that can be scaled-up for a pilot demonstration as part of NREL’s Economic Long-Duration Electricity Storage Using Low-Cost Thermal Energy Storage and a High-Efficiency Power Cycle (ENDURING) project.