Lancaster engineer seeks funding for innovative energy storage product
A Lancaster university student is looking for funding after inventing a new energy storage solution which she says could be the missing link needed for a renewable energy revolution.Abigail Carson came up with the design for the “Flywheel Energy Store” as part of her MEng degree course.
And the 21-year-old says the product could have a wide number of uses, most notably for the storage of electricity generated by renewable sources like wind turbines and solar panels.“The global energy crisis is the biggest and most urgent problem that needs addressing,” she said.
“The Flywheel Energy Store can be used for a vest range of applications, most significantly in providing energy security and independence for everyone globally. It could eliminate waste in power networks, pumping water to villages and allowing for cleaner cooking and heating in developing countries, instant charging of electric vehicles, and off-grid energy storage.”According to Abigail the product retains energy kinetically in a “levitated floating mass” with a permanently levitated rotor, as opposed to an electromagnetic one.
She added her design would also improve on existing products, particularly battery powered products.“The lifespan of the FES is around 30 years, which is much longer than that for batteries,” she said.
“Batteries cannot withstand power transfer pattern variations and suffer badly from charging and discharging abuse. This is not a problem for the FES, which is virtually immune to this sort of abuse.”Abigail added: “In addition, my FES has a design that can be recycled, which is impossible for batteries.”
The young engineer currently has a patent pending for the design and is seeking investment opportunities. Professor Jianqiao Ye, chair of Mechanical Engineering at Lancaster University and Abigail’s project supervisor, added: “I am very pleased to see that Abi has moved from idea to patent of her innovative design that has shown great potential. She worked through it by taking advantages of our nationally high-ranked mechanical engineering program, as a part of her third year research and design project. I am looking forward to further development of her new FES and wish her very successful in marketing her invention.”