Danish Startup Gets Billionaire Backing to Store Energy in Salt
(Bloomberg) -- A startup developing a technology to store energy in molten salt has raised about $12 million from backers, including Denmark’s richest man.
Hyme will spend some of the money on a pilot plant to find new ways to store unused electricity from wind and solar, Chief Executive Officer Ask Lovschall-Jensen said in an interview. And the Danish company is already considering another financing round “to ensure that we can head toward global deployment,” he said.
Denmark gets about 40% of its electricity from wind power but is often unable to use all the power generated at night when demand is lower. The problem has been magnified in 2021 because wind speeds have been lower than normal and energy prices have soared in Europe.
Hyme, a spinoff from nuclear startup Seaborg Technologies Aps, expects that its storage facility can keep energy at a cost of about $20/kWh and store it for as long as 14 days without losing significant heat. The firm has developed its method using hydroxide salt -- a corrosive material known as caustic soda. When heated and melted into liquid, hydroxide salt can be used to store and transmit energy at 1/10 of the cost of solar salts.
Investors include a series of existing owners of Seaborg, including Danish billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen through his investment arm Heartland A/S.
Heartland CEO Lise Kaae expects energy consumption to rise in coming years and says Hyme has the potential to deliver one of the solutions to store energy from renewable sources.
“Even though we know we invest at a very early stage, we believe investing in innovation in this area can make a positive difference,” Kaae said by phone.
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