Unleashing the Power of Flywheel Energy Storage
Flywheel technology, a transformative method of energy storage, is leading industries into an era of new levels of efficiency and sustainability. Key to operating these systems and optimizing their performance are vacuum pumps.
In an increasingly energy-conscious world focused on sustainability, PUNCH Flybrid’s flywheel technologies have emerged as a remarkable solution for the storage and controlled release of energy, capable of providing rapid power boosts when needed. At the heart of PUNCH’s innovative Power 200 system is a KNF diaphragm pump that ensures optimum performance.
Sustainable Energy Across Industries With Flywheel Technology
Flywheel systems work by using the rotational momentum of a spinning flywheel to both store and release energy as required. Excess electrical energy from generators or other power sources is used to accelerate the rotation of a spinning flywheel and is stored in the form of kinetic energy. Whenever electrical energy is required, the flywheel system’s electric motor acts as a dynamo and converts the kinetic energy back into electrical energy. This process provides seamless energy transfer and ensures a stable and reliable power supply.
These systems can be used in a wide range of applications, making them a versatile choice for many industries. For example, they are well suited for use in uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), providing seamless energy to critical facilities such as data centres and hospitals. In addition, they can be integrated with renewable energy sources, allowing excess energy to be stored for later use. In the industrial sector, flywheels enable rapid power supply in applications such as cranes and manufacturing, ultimately improving overall efficiency. They can also play a key role in maintaining grid stability by regulating frequency and voltage. Their compact design makes them particularly suitable for installations where space is at a premium.
PUNCH Transforming Energy Efficiency
PUNCH Flybrid, an expert in uninterruptible power supply systems, demonstrates the practical application of flywheel technology with its Punch Power 200 flywheel energy system. This innovative solution offers the ability to provide a rapid power boost using stored energy, allowing generators or mains connections to be downsized by 1.5 to 3 times without sacrificing performance.
The flywheel energy system is primarily designed for use in scenarios characterised by highly dynamic load cycles, typically involving large electric motors powered by diesel generators. This versatility extends to a wide range of applications including cranes, hoists, welders, mixers and water treatment plants.
By capturing idle energy from the generator and storing it in the flywheel, the flywheel unit provides an instantaneous reactive boost of up to 80kW of real power for 7 seconds, eliminating peak starting currents experienced by the generator, with the potential to halve the size of the generator used, reducing fuel consumption and emissions. One unit installed on a single tower crane can result in fuel savings equivalent to taking 55 cars off the road in just one year.
KNF Vacuum Pumps Enabling Sustainable Flywheel Energy Technology
To ensure that the system operates safely and efficiently, PUNCH Flybrid relies on a specially customised NMP 850 HP vacuum pump. By tightly encapsulating the flywheel in a deep vacuum, energy losses due to friction are minimised, thereby maximising the energy storage capacity of the high-strength flywheels made from advanced materials.
In order to provide a constant vacuum to the flywheel, the NMP 850 HP diaphragm pump has been customised with a double-head housing that accommodates a larger HD BLDC motor and eccentric. It effectively overcomes the challenge of restarting against an initial vacuum pressure of 250 mbar abs. at the vacuum port, ultimately achieving a final vacuum of ≤180 mbar abs. In addition, an HNBR diaphragm is used, specially selected for its durability and compatibility with oil vapours and possible low temperatures. With this precision engineering and the ability to maintain the deep vacuum, the pump plays a key role in maximising overall performance while minimising energy loss.
PUNCH Flybrid’s expert application of flywheel technology, complemented by the engineering excellence of KNF vacuum pumps, provides a powerful solution for improved energy efficiency and sustainability, demonstrating the potential for significant improvements across various industries and paving the way for a more responsible and resource-efficient future.