Hydrostor & Perilya partner on Australian storage project

October 2, 2023

Long duration energy storage developer Hydrostor and mining project developer Perilya have entered into a binding agreement to leverage the existing mining assets at Perilya’s Potosi Mine in Broken Hill, Australia to support the construction of the Silver City Energy Storage (SCES) project.

Perilya Broken Hill Limited and Hydrostor have been working together since 2020 to evaluate the potential of a large-scale long duration energy storage project adjacent to the Potosi Mine northeast of Broken Hill, New South Wales.

The Silver City Project uses Hydrostor’s advanced compressed air energy storage (A-CAES) technology and will leverage several features of the Perilya Potosi Mine Site, including:

–   Very hard and impermeable metamorphic rock at the mine site

–   Existing underground mine development, providing access to construct the underground cavern at optimal depth of approximately 600 metres below ground

–   Existing mine support infrastructure, facilitating the construction of the project.

The agreement includes “access to property transactions and existing mine infrastructure, provision of construction support services, and supports the continued and longer-term operation of the Potosi Mine during and after the project is being constructed,” a Hydrostor statement said.

Benefits for the local economy will include:

–   Employment, skills, and training opportunities including 750 direct and indirect jobs during construction and 70 ongoing jobs in operation.

–   A contribution of more than AUD$1 billion to the regional economy

–   Opportunities for local suppliers, contractors, and service providers.

The project has been selected by Transgrid as the preferred provider of backup power for Broken Hill and the Far West region of New South Wales. The project is supported by the New South Wales Government under the Emerging Energy Program and by the Federal Government via a grant from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

Martin Becker, Hydrostor’s vice president of business development and origination in Australia, said: “Hydrostor is excited to partner with Perilya on this unique and critical infrastructure project. Silver City is our first Australian project and will be a showcase for A-CAES technology in the future”.

Bruce Byrne, chief operating officer of Perilya Broken Hill Limited said: “The project will realise additional value to an important asset, well after the current developed stopes are completely mined”.

Paul Rasmussen, Hydrostor’s vice-president of integration said: “By leveraging the existing mine investment and infrastructure, this partnership enables us to improve project delivery timeframe, since we can build the underground air storage cavern much faster, with reduced setup costs and a better understanding of the geology at site”.

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