An energy station that combines multiple sources of renewable energy is in development at the University of Hull.
The next generation station will see multiple renewable fuel inputs, including industry and household waste, solar and hydro power, wind and biofuels, fed into a number of local community stations. Once here, they will be converted into energy and distributed across the region. Benefits of the concept, noted as being the first of its kind, are that it maximises energy efficiency, reduces energy waste and negates the need for an expensive upgrade of the national grid, with energy collected and distributed within communities.
It is being developed by Professor Zudong Zhao, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies at the University of Hull, who said innovation was necessary to meet future energy objectives. Zhao warned that delaying action would increase the likelihood of the UK being locked into a more expensive, less resilient energy system. The localised community energy station concept, Zhao added, could “transform the way we use energy and the way we interact with energy”.
Zhao explained: “A smart integrated energy system, based around new forms of flexibility, could help the UK deliver its objectives. The station is a unique concept – we will have the energy conversion process take place at the same station which will generate energy at a high efficiency, and waste energy from the station could be distributed across the region.”