Dresser-Rand Group has been awarded a contract to supply equipment for a 317MW compressed air energy storage (CAES) facility by Apex Compressed Air Energy Storage. The deal is worth around a cool USD$200m and the CAES facility will be built near Tennessee Colony, Texas. Named the Apex Bethel Energy Centre, it is noteworthy for being the first CAES facility to be built in the United States since 1991.
In fact, it will be only the third ever large-scale operating facility of its kind on the planet. According to a recent report, CAES is a technology that has until now been neglected in favour of cheap natural gas peaking plants and other inexpensive energy forms. The advent of increasing and of course intermittent solar and wind power presents an ideal opportunity for large-scale CAES to finally spread its wings.