Brenmiller switches on 4 GWh rock-based thermal energy storage system factory in Israel


Thermal energy storage (TES) manufacturer Brenmiller has inaugurated its first factory in Dimona, Israel.

The company said the manufacturing facility is the world’s first-ever TES gigafactory and that it will reach a full annual capacity of 4 GWh by the end of this year. “We’re Israeli — we’re building technologies that can reach up to 1,400 F in the middle of the desert — we know a thing or two about harnessing heat, and we’re ready to share that knowledge with the world,” said its CEO, Avi Brenmiller.

Brenmiller secured a €7.5 million ($8.2 million) credit facility from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to build the factory.

“Brenmiller’s bGen TES system is an intelligent, scalable, and cost-effective solution that enables industrial- and utility-scale decarbonization by turning renewable electricity into clean steam, hot water, or hot air,” the company said in a statement. “This provides industrial factories and power plants critical reliability, protection from renewable intermittency and fluctuations in energy market prices, in addition to 24/7 access to electric heat.”

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Brenmiller recently tested a 24 MWh TES system in Italy both as power-to-heat equipment and a thermal storage, in partnership with Enel.

“Our levelized cost of heat (LCOH) depends on what is charging the system. Typically, this is cheap renewable energy, so our LCOH stands between 30-50 $/MWh, which makes it cheaper than gas today in most places in Europe,” the company said at the time.

Brenmiller’s bGen system heat crushes rocks and then stores that thermal energy for minutes, hours, or days. The stored heat energy can be used to produce energy in the form of steam for electricity, water, or hot air for industrial applications. The bGen system is said to be low maintenance, with a lifespan of more than 30 years.

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