Gravity could soon put power back into Austar mine at Cessnock

A former mine site in the Hunter Coalfields is proposed to be transformed into a renewable energy storage site.

Green Gravity has partnered with mining company Yancoal who owns the Austar mine near Cessnock, to do a pre-feasibility study on using their technology at that mine.

The Austar mine officially closed in February last year.

Woollongong-based company Green Gravity’s energy storage system works by moving heavy weights vertically in legacy mine shafts to capture and release the gravitational potential energy of the weights. Green Gravity said their mechanical,moving parts being used in disused mine shafts means their energy storage technology is low-cost, long life and environmentally compelling.

The company said they’re aiming to become the world’s lowest cost and most sustainable provider of energy storage technology.

Founder and CEO of Green Gravity Mark Swinnerton said the pre-feasibility study represents a great opportunity for Green Gravity and Yancoal to indentify new economic potential for the former mine site, demonstrate re-use options for legacy coal mining and add more jobs to the region.

“Successfully identifying the best method of fitting gravitational technology at the former Austar mine site will create a template for beneficial re-use of legacy mining sites for Yancoal, and for thousands of other mines around the country.

“Green Gravity’s energy storage technology represents a breakthrough in the search for economic long-duration storage of renewable energy. By re-using mining assets, costs can be kept low. By using gravity as the fuel, we dispense with consuming the critical water, land, and chemicals which other storage technologies rely on.”

CEO of Yancoal Australia David Moult said the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is a great step forward.

“As the world moves towards a lower carbon economy, Yancoal is proactively exploring opportunities in the renewable energy sector, with a particular focus on decarbonisation and carbon-neutral themes. An important element of this project is to show how renewable energy projects can play a potential role in beneficial post-mining land use.

“This MOU with Green Gravity is a demonstration that we are serious in assessing potential renewable energy opportunities and in collaborating with innovative partners to progress our strategy and vision for Yancoal’s future for the benefit of our shareholders, employees and communities.”

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