Hydrostor and Perilya Use Mining Assets for Large-Scale Energy Storage

Oct. 4, 2023
The project will be capable of generating 200 MW for eight hours, with a reserve capacity of 250 MWh for backup power during network outages

Hydrostor has entered into a binding agreement with Perilya to collaborate on the construction of the Silver City Energy Storage (SCES) Project in Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia.

Hydrostor is a Canadian long-duration energy storage solutions developer, while Perilya is a mining project developer and operator based in Australia. The initiative builds upon their partnership, which began in 2020, to explore the potential for a large-scale long-duration energy storage project adjacent to Perilya’s Potosi Mine in Broken Hill.

The SCES Project will utilize Hydrostor’s advanced compressed air energy storage (A-CAES) technology and take advantage of several unique features at the Perilya Potosi Mine Site, including the presence of hard and impermeable metamorphic rock, existing underground mine development for constructing an underground cavern approximately 600 meters below ground, and pre-existing mine support infrastructure.

The project will be capable of generating 200 MW for eight hours, with a reserve capacity of 250 MWh for backup power during network outages. It will serve as a grid-connected energy storage asset, trading large quantities of energy daily while providing a long-term, emission-free grid reliability solution for Broken Hill and the broader region.

“Silver City is our first Australian project and will be a showcase for A-CAES technology in the future,” said Martin Becker, Hydrostor’s Vice President of Business Development and Origination in Australia.

The agreement includes access to property transactions, existing mine infrastructure, provision of construction support services, and ensures the continued operation of the Potosi Mine during and after the SCES Project’s construction.

“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,” said Paul Rasmussen, Vice-President of Integration at Hydrostor.

The SCES Project will create significant employment opportunities, with 750 direct and indirect jobs during construction and 70 ongoing jobs in operation. Additionally, it is expected to contribute over A$1 billion (about $633 million U.S., at current exchange rates) to the regional economy and offer opportunities for local suppliers, contractors, and service providers.

Additionally, Transgrid has selected the SCES Project as the preferred solution for providing backup power to Broken Hill and the Far West region of New South Wales, ensuring reliable backup power for the town and existing or future mining activities in the region.

The project is supported by the Federal Government via a grant from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and by the NSW Government through the Emerging Energy Program.