Prelude floating liquefied natural gas facility arrives in Australia
Shell Australia has confirmed that its Prelude floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility has arrived in Australian waters.
Prelude is the first deployment of Shell’s FLNG technology, that will see a 488m long floating facility extracting and liquefying gas at sea, before it is exported to customers around the globe.
The project is located approximately 475km north-north east of Broome in Western Australia.
Shell Australia Chairman Zoe Yujnovich said the arrival of the Prelude FLNG facility signalled a new era for the Australian LNG export industry, with the first floating liquefaction facility deployed in local waters.
“Prelude’s arrival is a clear demonstration of Shell’s long standing commitment to investment and development in Australia – delivering significant economic benefits to the nation,” she said.
Yujnovich said Shell had awarded a majority of Prelude contracts to Australian contractors, including the contract awarded to Australian engineering company Monadelphous for maintenance and modification services valued at $200mn.
“Prelude is an Australian project and Shell has recognised how important it is to build strong partnerships with Australian industry,” she commented.
“To develop and maintain a safe, high performance culture on the facility, Shell has partnered with South Metropolitan TAFE in Western Australia to develop specific training for Prelude technicians.
“One hundred and fifty technicians have been trained across a broad range of critical skills, including helicopter landing and refuelling skills, rigging, scaffolding and first aid.
“West Australian based company CIVMEC, a construction and engineering services provider, constructed the four massive anchor piles for Prelude’s subsea flowlines from their facility in Henderson.”
The Prelude project will employ 260 local workers on board the facility during operations and create over a 1500 jobs during the hook-up and commissioning phase of the project.
Form Energy receives funding power for iron-air batteries
Form Energy believes it has cracked the conundrum of commercialising grid storage through iron-air batteries - and some of the biggest names in industry are backing its potential.
The startup recently announced the battery chemistry of its first commercial product and a $200 million Series D financing round led by ArcelorMittal’s XCarb innovation fund. Founded in 2017, Form Energy is backed by investors Eni Next LLC, MIT’s The Engine, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Prelude Ventures, Capricorn Investment Group and Macquarie Capital.
While solar and wind resources are the lowest marginal cost sources of electricity, the grid faces a challenge: how to manage the multi-day variability of renewable energy, even in periods of multi-day weather events, without sacrificing energy reliability or affordability.
Moreover, while Lithium-ion batteries are well suited to fast bursts of energy production, they run out of energy after just a few hours. Iron-air batteries, however, are predicted to have theoretical energy densities of more than 1,200 Wh/kg according to Renaissance of the iron-air battery (phys.org)
The active components of Form Energy's iron-air battery system are some of the cheapest, and most abundant materials: iron, water, and air. Iron-air batteries are the best solution to balance the multi-day variability of renewable energy due to their extremely low cost, safety, durability, and global scalability.
It claims its first commercial product is a rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion and can be optimised to store electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with legacy power plants.
"This product is our first step to tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonisation: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather, grid outages, or periods of low renewable generation," it states.
Mateo Jaramillo, CEO and Co-founder of Form Energy, said it conducted a broad review of available technologies and has reinvented the iron-air battery to optimise it for multi-day energy storage for the electric grid. "With this technology, we are tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonization: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather or grid outages," he said.
Form Energy and ArcelorMittal are working jointly on the development of iron materials which ArcelorMittal would non-exclusively supply for Form’s battery systems. Form Energy intends to source the iron domestically and manufacture the battery systems near where they will be sited. Form Energy’s first project is with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy, located near the heart of the American Iron Range.
Greg Ludkovsky, Global Head of Research and Development at ArcelorMittal, believes Form Energy is at the leading edge of developments in the long-duration, grid-scale battery storage space. "The multi-day energy storage technology they have developed holds exciting potential to overcome the issue of intermittent supply of renewable energy."
Investors in Form Energy's November 2020 round included Energy Impact Partners, NGP Energy Technology Partners III, and Temasek.
In May 2020, it signed a contract with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy to jointly deploy a 1MW / 150MWh pilot project to be located in Cambridge, MN. Great River Energy is Minnesota's second-largest electric utility and the fifth largest generation and transmission cooperative in the US.
Last week Helena and Energy Vault announced a strategic partnership to identify additional opportunities for Energy Vault’s waste remediation technologies as the company begins deployment of its energy storage system worldwide. It received new investment from Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV) in June.
Maoneng has revealed more details of its proposed 240MWp / 480MWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula in Australia (click here).
The BESS represents hundreds of millions of dollars of investment that will improve electricity grid reliability and network stability by drawing energy from the grid during off-peak periods for battery storage, and dispatching energy to the grid during peak periods.