Italian startup Energy Dome is revolutionizing renewable energy storage for wind and solar power. The company’s technology is a carbon-based battery that is 100% sustainable and recyclable – created using just water, steel and carbon dioxide. The battery can store energy for up to 24 hours, and its simple components make it easily manufactured anywhere in the world.
“This is a new process that has never been done before,” said Energy Dome CEO Claudio Spadacini. “We don’t use any exotic materials … there is no dependency on rare earth materials like cobalt or lithium. This makes our technology geopolitically independent. It can be produced everywhere, and it can be used everywhere.”
Energy Dome’s batteries solve one of renewable energy’s biggest issues: how to store it long-term. Climate factors affect wind and sun, so these types of energy can be unreliable. A cloudy or non-wind day could mean the power is out. Energy Dome’s batteries allow longer storage times without greater carbon output, making renewable energy more efficient and dependable.
This shift is critical as nations set goals for 100% renewable energy. According to the Department of Energy, this shift requires 100 times more renewable energy storage capacity than currently available.
The new Energy Dome battery technology operates using a closed loop system that converts carbon dioxide from gas to liquid and stores it using pressure. The liquid carbon dioxide is evaporated into a gas that powers a turbine to generate electricity. The system has zero emissions and costs half of what a lithium-ion battery costs.
The company is currently demonstrating the system in Sardinia — a location with plentiful sunshine and wind — with hopes that the island will become the first green, net-zero emissions island in Europe. So far, the technology has generated significant interest, with more than $35 million in funding to create facilities for a major Italian utility company by 2024.
“Our intention is to proceed at high speed because climate change does not wait,” Spadacini added. “The market needs a solution for [long-duration energy storage] that is quickly available, efficient and reliable.”
If successful, Energy Dome’s storage tech could be crucial to fueling greener cities across the globe, cutting barriers to cost and storage time that has perplexed other storage plans. The company is sparking interest worldwide.
“We have had a lot of requests to come and see our plant,” said Spadacini. “There is big demand for long-duration energy storage technologies because lithium is simply too expensive and has too short a lifespan. We have had interest from large companies and utilities in Europe, the Middle East, and North America.”