There has been an extraordinary amount of activity over the last quarter and below we highlight key developments and Executive Chairman Dr Kevin Moriarty provides his review.
- $8.4m in IPO funds promised by cornerstone investors following $2.5m seed raise
- IPO in preparation for early 2018
- 3000 square metre R&D facility leased for build of 10MWh TESS-IND and test cell of TESS-GRID
- Design finalised for the TESS-IND
- Orders placed for key equipment to enable TESS-IND installation by end 2017
- Design progressed for a new device to burn biogas and store its energy –TESS-GAS
- Planning underway to build 13.3MWh test cell for 200MWh TESS-GRID
- Completion of Options Study for 1GWh TESS-GRID
- Key sites selected for first commercial pilots of TESS-IND and TESS-GRID
- MoU signed with leading utility company to develop bio-gas burning TESS
- MoU signed to provide energy storage for large glasshouse facility with installed solar PV
- MoU signed with solar developer to provide fast frequency response and storage for 400MW PV farm
- Cornerstone investors contribute $2.5m at 15 cents per share with commitments to IPO
- $560k AusIndustry grant awarded for TESS-IND pilot project
- Submitted three applications to the Government of South Australia’s $150m Renewable Technology Fund
This quarter again brought major developments for your company as it progresses towards commercialisation. Key sites were studied and selected for the first commercial installations while major opportunities opened for business development.
The design for the 10 MWh TESS-IND progressed to the point of component selection, requiring our engineers to study Energy Recovery Systems (ERS) in operating plants and engage manufacturers for detailed refractory design. The result is that we have ordered key components to ensure commissioning starts by the end of 2017 in our new facility in the Southlink Industrial Park.
Following approaches from greenhouse growers and food processing businesses, we have been conducting feasibility studies and preparing contracts for installations that will provide them with reliable power and heat. It’s important to note that their heat requirement outweighs power by up to 10 to 1, so our TESS Devices provide an ideal solution for displacing gas heating. Following commissioning of the first 10 MWh device at Southlink, we expect to move it to the first commercial site in March 2018.
Our engineers also completed an analysis of component and configuration options for the TESS-GRID, undertaking thermal evaluation and computational fluid dynamic modelling to determine optimal configuration for the 200 MWh module. They also prepared high-level design of a 1GWh plant, integrating five 200 MWh modules with a 50MW ERS, for an estimated cost of $225 million. The actual production cost of such plants is expected to be much less, however, this is the first so it incorporates development and extra component costs. The aim for these devices is to maximise electrical recovery, requiring an efficient ERS. The constant and very high temperature output from the TESS allows ERS to operate at maximum design efficiency so our engineers are working with manufacturers of the latest technology to deliver 50% efficiency. The plan is to achieve at least 80% CHP efficiency by co-locating the TESS with agribusiness and food processors at several development sites that have been proposed for solar and wind generation in South Australia.
The impetus for development of the TESS-GRID is the increasing requirement of electricity network regulators for grid stability measures that require bulk storage. We are actively engaged with solar farm developers to provide fast frequency response to ensure they get development approval from regulators, with the added advantage of extending hours of electricity output.
Work has progressed on a new device to burn the biogas produced in waste treatment plants and directly heat our silicon storage. As recently announced by the SA Energy Minister, government owned utility company SA Water approached 1414 Degrees seeking a more efficient method for disposal of the gas along with the ability to store the energy for regeneration as power and heat on demand. The Minister pointed out that the regenerated power from TESS-GAS at waste facilities could help to alleviate shortfalls during peak demand on the national grid. The companies have reached agreement to build and test a 10MWh TESS-GAS in a waste treatment facility. There is a very large local and global market for this product.
In September, the South Australian Government announced its $150 million Renewable Technology Fund, opening the possibility of much faster development for aspects of our technology. We have submitted applications that will extend our technology in three key new areas: providing fast frequency response for grid stability at a solar farm; building the test cell and first 200 MWh module of a 1 GWh TESS for energy trading and heating for food production or processing; and for the development of the first TESS-GAS.
Our corporate team has been expanding and reorganising to ensure we have the necessary capability to match our commercial and technical opportunities. By the time we undertake our IPO early next year, I am aiming for your Company to be managed by a tightly knit and responsive group of professional employees.
Work on a prospectus will accelerate in the coming quarter as grants from the Renewable Technology Fund are announced, culminating in the commissioning of the first TESS-IND. I look forward to reporting on a productive period for shareholder value.
Dr Kevin Moriarty
Research and Development
The Research and Development team has taken delivery of an externally fired gas turbine with heat exchangers and ancillary equipment for connection to the prototype TESS. The connection and commissioning is running to schedule with completion by end October. We have also outgrown our test facility in Tonsley and relocated to our new 3000m2facility in Lonsdale. The additional space allows for the installation and testing of the 10MWh TESS-IND and a TESS-GRID pilot at the new facility.
Image: Proposed layout of the New Research and Development Facility
The 10MWh TESS-IND design and build was progressed through the quarter, primarily focused on component selection, including inspection of energy recovery systems in operating plants and selection of refractory manufacturer. Key equipment has been ordered to ensure installation at the new test facility by the end of 2017.
Image: Impression of the TESS-IND 10MWh module
In addition to work on the conventionally powered TESS-IND unit, the team also progressed the design for a TESS capable of directly storing heat from burning biogas. Biogas consists of a mix of different gases, but predominantly methane from the breakdown of organic matter. A typical source is a waste water treatment plant or capped rubbish dump. The production of biogas is a continuous process and must be consumed shortly after generation. The benefit of using the biogas within the TESS is that the energy from a large amount of gas can be stored thermally in a small space for utilisation at the most suitable time, be that when the site requires additional power or when the electrical spot price is high. This is a new technology that opens up a significant local and global market.
The designs of the TESS-GRID pilot plant, 200MWh TESS-GRID and 1GWh TESS-GRID have all been advanced, particularly design and modelling of the storage and the energy recovery systems. This has enabled us to start discussions with equipment suppliers to further refine the design, schedule and budget for each stage. We have also reviewed and modified the design to ensure we are compliant with the latest requirement from the Office of the Technical Regulator for Fast Frequency Response and synchronous load, discussed in the technology section.
Image: Impression of a 1GWh/50MW TESS module
The Government of South Australia has recently released a new regulation for the generation of electricity through the Office of the Technical Regulator. The regulation stipulates requirements for all new electrical generators, renewable or otherwise, to comply with a Fast Frequency Response (FFR) initiative to help aid in grid stability. On investigation into the requirements our TESS units are ideally placed to meet this requirement while still delivering maximum benefit to the renewable installer.