Brenmiller Energy, an Israeli pioneer of thermal energy storage, is collaborating with Fortlev, the largest producer of water storage solutions in Brazil, to install Brenmiller’s bGen thermal energy storage (TES) unit at Fortlev’s production facility in Anápolis, Brazil.
The bGen unit is the first TES system powered by renewable energy to be used to generate hot air for manufacturing plastic products in the world.
It is also the first thermal energy storage system powered by renewable energy to be used for commercial operations in South America.
Crushed rocks inside the bGen can efficiently store energy from renewable sources for hours or days. The stored heat can be directed to produce clean steam, hot water, or hot air on-demand to mold plastic, clean food, dry wood, or complete other industrial processes.
The bGen unit enables Fortlev to use renewable biomass rather than natural gas to heat the air it uses to make plastic water tanks with rotational molding machines. Substituting biomass for natural gas allows Fortlev to lower the fuel costs associated with heating this air by more than 75 percent.
The first installed bGen unit will also lower the greenhouse gas emissions associated with heating this air by approximately 800 metric tons per year.
Fortlev and Brenmiller Energy are in discussions to install 60 bGen units at the facility, which will enable it to avoid 48,000 metric tons of GHG emissions per year –equivalent to approximately 10,500 gasoline-powered passenger vehicles driven for one year.
Fortlev Solar also plans to open a factory to produce bGen units for the Brazilian market.
Brenmiller is working with Philip Morris International (Romania), Enel (Italy), and other industrial and utility customers to use its TES technology to decarbonize a diverse range of such processes around the world.
The installation of the bGen unit at Fortlev manufacturing facility was supported by the Israel Innovation Authority and the Brazilian Agency for Industrial Research and Innovation.