Cheap energy could be accessed in years to come by installing mini turbines throughout the UK's existing gas pipeline infrastructure, reports cleantechnica.com.
Trials are to be conducted in the next few months by installing mini turbines within gas pipelines in east London. The turbines will utilise the internal pipeline pressure to generate electricity, with a nationwide deployment potentially capable of generating the same output as a nuclear power station. The turbines, known as turbo expanders, would be only 20 centimetres wide and will be deployed by a firm called 2OC and National Grid.
Turbo expander technology has in fact been in existence for over 20 years, but had previously been considered too expensive to be economically viable. With energy suppliers having introduced substantial price rises in recent months, and the future of cheap energy increasingly in doubt, the plan is now being shifted into the testing phase.
The technology could also be used alongside combined heat and power (CHP) equipment which would significantly increase the efficiency of cheap energy generation.
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