Breakthrough? New doughnut-shaped island to store wind power — Official: “A great solution”… could be first of its kind

Published: January 26th, 2013 at 7:04 am ET
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Title: Belgium plans artificial island to store wind power
Source: Reuters
Date:  Jan 17, 2013
h/t Anonymous tip

Belgium is planning to build a doughnut-shaped island in the North Sea that will store wind energy by pumping water out of a hollow in the middle, as it looks for ways to lessen its reliance on nuclear power.

One of the biggest problems with electricity is that it is difficult to store [...]

Excess energy would be used to pump water out of the centre of the island, and then the water would be let back in through turbines when demand outpaces supply. [...]

Belgium plans a complete exit from nuclear power as soon as enough energy from alternative sources becomes available [...]

Belgium’s North Sea minister Johan Vande Lanotte

  • “We have a lot of energy from the wind mills and sometimes it just gets lost because there isn’t enough demand for the electricity”
  • “This is a great solution”
  • She thought it could be the first of its kind

See also: The world can be fully powered by alternative energy in 20-40 years, Stanford researcher says

Published: January 26th, 2013 at 7:04 am ET
By
Email Article Email Article
13 comments

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13 comments to Breakthrough? New doughnut-shaped island to store wind power — Official: “A great solution”… could be first of its kind

  • AFTERSHOCK AFTERSHOCK

    brilliant concept! This demonstrates humans aren't beyond all hope…


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  • dodge

    Couple of reactions come to mind. "You can't do that! It's never been done before." of course the doubt is difficult to overcome, but even more is the lobbying and environmental issues to overcome. Second, DUH (slaps head) why didn't I think of that, it's so obvious.


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  • tarpus

    This, along with Germany and others are slowly sounding the death knell for the nuke nanny nitwits.


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  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    All countries must follow Belgium's lead: U.S, Russia, China, etc, there is no time to waste.


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  • ftlt

    I don't understand why we have not been using sea buoy pumps for years linked to man made lakes on shoreline that have a certain height and use the head for hydroelectric power on demand – cheap and clean… The Irish Sea in Britain is perfect… West coast of S America… And many other places..


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    • AFTERSHOCK AFTERSHOCK

      localizing the pumps to the basin, ftlt, will minimize the amount of energy needed to pump-out the water. This is some really exciting engineering! I hope they move quickly and keep the fat-cats at bay. They'll only turn this dream-concept into another pie-in-sky project. And we'll all find ourselves asking "Whatever happened to that great thingy-magingy, they were talking about, way back when?!"…


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    • patb2009

      ftlt, man made lakes are expensive. also pumping seawater on shore risks salt infiltrating into

      underground aquifers.

      now, this is a good idea, but, i'd opt for something a little different, i would build an underwater donut that could be anchored out a little bit.

      but i'd pump air inside the structure under pressure. when you need energy, let water inside the bottom and vent air out the top . feed that air into turbines on shore.

      this way, the turbines are on shore, the turbines face air as opposed to salt water and the underwater structure is always in pressure balance


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  • m a x l i

    Interesting idea!

    Where there is a tide, such an artificial island could produce electricity, even when it is not built for energy storage. Belgium has a difference between high and low water of approximately 3.5…4 meters. (Probably not ideal for for tidal power?)
    http://tides.mobilegeographics.com/calendar/month/4443.html
    It would be interesting to know how the energy storage function and the occurrence of tides play together. I suspect there will be days when the energy storage works more efficiently and others when it will be less efficient – depending on the tides accelerating or slowing down the turbines or making the job for the pumps easier or harder.

    When there is an artificial island, it would offer space for offshore wind turbines or a holiday resort or whatever.

    Probably a policeman had the idea for that doughnut-shaped island…


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  • I Dont Know

    Did you know Belgium has 7 operating nuclear reactors, but is phasing out nuclear energy by 2025.

    “We have a lot of energy from the wind mills and sometimes it just gets lost because there isn’t enough demand for the electricity” said Johan Vande Lanotte.

    There isn't enough demand for the electricity?

    There's an easy solution to that…start closing down the operating nuclear reactors sooner than 2025.

    It's a win-win solution.


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  • tarpus

    I saw a TV show last year that stated: When in the suns rays, every square meter of the earth is hit with the equivalent of a 1000 watt High Pressure Sodium bulb. Do the math on that, someone. I'm not good at the subject. I was also told that the earth absorbs more energy from the sun in three minutes than all of mankind has used in it's entire history. But we still need nuclear and coal according to the proponents of evil. Some are still trying to convince me that thorium is the way to go…still thinking about that spaceship out of here :)


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    • AFTERSHOCK AFTERSHOCK

      @tarpus: space is the only place that's acceptable for the deployment of nuclear powered systems. All nuclear power technology should (and eventually must) be outlawed for use within the planet's biosphere.

      Once you've understood how foreign policy lubricates international energy policies, you'll understand why renewable energy systems have been purposely ignored. The world's purposed kept dependent on carbon based energy sources (crude oil in the main) to justify the massive military expenditures, which in turn are used to repress nation's who resist the globalist agenda. Once every nation's been subjugated to that agenda, then advanced renewable systems will be permitted to come online. As it is now, these advanced energy production systems are only deployed in a piecemeal fashion.


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