E.ON fosters the development of a game-changing technology to produce power from wind. The company invested in Kite Power Solutions (KPS). This British start up company secured a new investment of approx. 6 million euro. E.ON invested along with Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures.
The investment will support KPS’s technical and commercial development of its pioneering high-altitude wind power generation technology. Instead of a rotor, KPS’s technology is harvesting wind by using a sail comparable to kite surfing in altitudes up to 450 meters.
The potential is to transform the global offshore wind generation market as the system is cheaper to manufacture and easier to deploy and maintain than conventional wind turbines. The cost potentially is so low that kite power generation would not need government incentives. Additionally it can be deployed in waters deeper than 40 meter found offshore of countries such as Portugal, Japan and the United States. Of course, kite power systems can also be deployed onshore.
This latest investment will support KPS’s plans to deploy a 500 kilowatt power system at West Freugh in Southwest Scotland next year, leading to an onshore demonstration array of multiple 500 kilowatt systems within the next four years. Thereafter, KPS will develop a 3 megawatt onshore system and then deploy a similar sized power system in offshore waters.
“E.ON has been looking into airborne wind technologies for five years. It supports one of our overall targets to drive down the costs for renewable energy. In addition to this, we catch the opportunity to be a first mover in producing renewable energy at locations where it is for economic and technical reasons not possible today.” said Frank Meyer, Senior Vice President B2C & Innovation at E.ON.
E.ON continues to promote innovation by making strategic co-investments in start-ups whose intelligent solutions are helping to shape tomorrow’s energy market. To date, E.ON has taken stakes in more than a dozen start-ups in the US, Europe, and Australia.