Energy and Mines

News

Centuries-old New York mine gets new lease on life supporting renewable energy

Centuries-old New York mine gets new lease on life supporting renewable energy
December 20
10:36 2016
Steve Burke and Jim Besha of Albany Engineering Corp. stand at the site of an abandoned iron mine in the Adirondacks, in Mineville, NY.

Steve Burke and Jim Besha of Albany Engineering Corp. stand at the site of an abandoned iron mine in the Adirondacks, in Mineville, NY. Credit: CBS News.

A long-defunct iron mine in Mineville, NY may be the key to storing the area’s solar and wind energy.

Renewable energy producers need ways to ensure an uninterrupted flow of power when the sun isn’t shining and winds are still. Affordable energy storage is widely seen as the solution.

“Today, everyone’s recognizing that a critical part of our energy infrastructure is going to be storage,” said Jim Besha, head of Albany Engineering Corp. You can think of it as a bank. If someone has excess solar energy, they would pay a fee to store it overnight.”

Millions of gallons of groundwater flooded the mine’s shafts over the years, naturally converting it into a potential hydroelectric storage facility. Engineers would drain roughly half of the water from the shafts and pump the remainder into an upper chamber. The water would then be released into a lower chamber, powering an array of 100 hydroelectric turbines a half-mile underground. The turbines would be reversed to pump the water back up to repeat the process.

See the full article at CBS News.



About Author

Kate Dougherty

Kate Dougherty

TWITTER / @ENERGYANDMINES