February 12, 2021: Israeli energy storage firm Chakratec has installed its flywheel technology at one of the hotel chain Premier Inn’s facilities in Germany to allow guests to charge their EVs without adding more pressure on to the power grid, the firm said on February 9.
The company says British hotel chain Premier Inn, which has around 800 hotels, is the first to install the technology in Germany. It is also the first indoor installation of its kind.
It is looking at installing the ‘Kinetic Power Booster’ at new sites throughout Germany over the next five years.
Because hotels are usually placed in busy city centres they are usually in areas where the power grid is under a lot of pressure of electricity demand.
“At most of Premier Inn’s city centre locations the grid is too weak to provide the required power for EV charging,” the company says. “To overcome this hurdle, energy storage must be added to the chargers to boost the grid, which is done by applying Chakratec’s kinetic energy storage technology.
“The KPB stores the electricity as kinetic energy in a fast-rotating flywheel in a vacuum, which presents two major advantages: unlimited high-power charge and discharge cycles (more than 150,000) without degradation over the full system lifetime of 20 years, and since it is a non-chemical technology, it is also a sustainable and reusable system, as opposed to toxic and polluting chemical batteries,” the company says.
Lead batteries have also been rolled out to supply electricity for EV charging to save peak charges from the grid.
In 2020, Batteries International reported on a feasibility study by the Consortium for Batteries Innovation, which showed that lead batteries could do just this job, and do it fast.
International Lead Award winner Frank Fleming explained how his company, EAI Grid Storage, had designed a gas station and earmarked a further eight for lead battery installations to charge EVs rather than sucking energy out of the grid.
“We want to charge quickly — fast charging is critical and lead batteries are extremely capable of fast recharge,” said Fleming.
“This system places the lead acid batteries very nicely between the grid and the EV charging. They sit on charge 24 hours a day and take the energy off the grid at a controlled rate below the excessive demand rate.”