News

Kite Power Systems Moves To New Glasgow Offices

Wednesday, October 4th, 2017

Kite Power Systems (KPS), the Scotland-based company developing kite power generation technology, has moved to a new head office in Glasgow to accommodate its expansion.

The company has moved to 103 West Regent Street in the city’s Central Business District from its previous home at the Tontine Innovation Centre in Glasgow’s Merchant City. Since arriving at the Tontine in January this year, with an initial headcount of 9, KPS has grown its total workforce to 30 people. The company’s Glasgow based management and design engineering teams currently number 22, with a further 8 engineers and technicians based at the company’s research and test facility at West Freugh, near Stranraer.

KPS’ new head office is a self contained, listed town house, offering 4,127 sq ft over three floors.

Simon Heyes, KPS’ Chief Executive Officer said, “This move to a new head office in Glasgow underlines just how quickly the business has grown over the past 9 months and it fully endorses our decision to relocate to Scotland, where we have been able to recruit many additional talented individuals, both engineers and support professions, to enable us to take our technology to the next level. The Tontine has provided us with an excellent foundation in the city and we are extremely grateful to Glasgow City Council for their support and encouragement over the past nine months.”

KPS’ power system features two kites which fly up to an altitude of 1,500 feet. Both kites are attached by tethers to a winch system which drives a generator as they spool out, thus producing electricity for the grid.  This technology has the potential to transform the global onshore and offshore wind generation markets, as it is cheaper to manufacture and requires less construction and installation materials than conventional wind turbines (See Notes to Editors).

As the only UK company active in the high-altitude wind power sector, KPS is currently flight testing its 40kW system at West Freugh and its latest 500kW demonstration model is being manufactured and assembled in Dumfries.

(ENDS)

For further information /downloadable images & film footage:

Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd)

David Ainsworth, Business Development Director: / +44 (0)7966 937146

 

For Scottish media inquiries

David Budge, Budge PR: 07831 156333 /

 

Notes to Editors

  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1,500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator, thus producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels. In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. While there are other Airborne Wind Energy (AWE) systems under development around the world, the patented KPS system is unique and KPS is the only British company active in the kite power market.

Real Engineering about KPS technology

Friday, July 7th, 2017

This is an interesting video by Real Engineering about the KPS technology. The video was funded by Royal Dutch Shell, the content does not belong to KPS and we have no control over the accuracy of the content.


Simon Heyes appointed Chief Executive at Kite Power Systems and Dr Andrew Tyler appointed non-executive Chairman

Monday, July 3rd, 2017

Kite Power Systems (KPS), the Scotland-based company developing kite power generation technology and the only company in the UK that is active in the high-altitude wind power sector, has appointed Simon Heyes as Chief Executive and Dr Andrew Tyler CBE as non-executive Chair.

These latest appointments complete the company’s recruitment of its senior management team that will take forward and commercialise KPS’s pioneering wind power technology, and follows the recent news of the Scottish Investment Bank’s £2m investment in the company.

Simon Heyes joins from Infinis Energy Holdings, where he was Wind Energy Development & Construction Director.  A Chartered Mechanical Engineer with a degree in Aeronautical Engineering, he worked at Infinis Energy for seven years after holding senior positions at SSE/Scottish Hydro-Electric and GEC Alstom.  His early career was in the aviation sector – working for Rolls-Royce on their civil aircraft engines before joining the RAF full time as an Engineer Officer.
Simon will work closely with KPS’s new Chair: Dr Andrew Tyler.  Andrew is (since 2013) Chief Executive of the major international aerospace and defence company Northrop Grumman Europe and has been an advisor to KPS over the past two years.  During his 25 year career, Andrew has held senior positions within the Ministry of Defence and was Chief Executive of the tidal energy company, Siemens-owned Marine Current Turbines from 2011-13.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

In addition, following the £2m investment in KPS made by Scottish Enterprise (announced June 22nd 2017), Dr Sian George, a former Chief Executive of Ocean Energy Europe, will be joining the KPS Board as a non-executive Director.

Sian joins the Board with a wealth of experience in policy at both UK and European levels and in the commercialisation of early stage technologies. Sian has held senior positions with several emerging technologies, including wave and tidal power, up to Chair level.

KPS’s senior management team now comprises:

Simon Heyes Chief Executive
Paul Jones Chief Finance Officer
Bill Hampton Chief Technology Officer
David Ainsworth Business Development Director
Colin Palmer Delivery Director

The non-executive members of the KPS Board are:

Dr Andrew Tyler Chair
Dr Sian George appointed by Scottish Enterprise
Robert Link appointed by Royal Dutch Shell
Paul Hammond appointed by Schlumberger
Niklas Rotering appointed by E.ON

Simon Heyes, Chief Executive said: “I’m delighted to be joining KPS; it’s an exciting time for everyone involved in the company.  With the support of our investors, and with the talented people that we have working at KPS, we are in a strong position to develop and commercialise our technology.   We intend to commence testing of our 500kW system later this year, and within 3-5 years we hope to deploy our first 3MW onshore and offshore kite systems.  Our testing of our 40kW system is ongoing, and achieving performance above our expectations”

KPS currently employs 24 people at its operations in Glasgow and West Freugh in south west Scotland.

For further information:

Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd) Paul Taylor, Taylor Keogh Communications: +44 (0)20 8392 8250 / +44 (0)7966 782611 /

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 07831 156333 /

Notes to Editors
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1,500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which drives a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex per MW of generation installed by as much as 50% when compared to current conventional offshore turbines, because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels. In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than for a traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a more effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. In December 2016, KPS secured £5million of new investment from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures to support KPS’s technical and commercial development. On June 22nd 2017, it was announced that the Scottish Investment Bank had invested £2million into KPS.

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Kite Power Systems secures £2M investment from Scottish Investment Bank

Thursday, June 22nd, 2017

Cabinet Secretary, Keith Brown (right) with David Ainsworth, Director, KPS alongside the winch unit for the company’s latest kite power generator.

Kite Power Systems (KPS), the company developing innovative new kite power technology in Scotland, has secured £2million equity investment from the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB), the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise.

The news was confirmed today (Thursday 22nd June 2017) by Keith Brown, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, on a visit to Kellwood Engineering in Dumfries, where KPS’s latest 500kW demonstration model is being manufactured and assembled.

Mr Brown was joined on the visit by Paul Wheelhouse, Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy.
The news follows confirmation by KPS in February 2017 that it had re-located from Essex and consolidated all of its activities in Scotland, establishing a research and test facility near Stranraer and a head office in Glasgow.

The £2million investment makes SIB  the latest investor in KPS, joining E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures, who announced a combined £5million investment in the company in December 2016.

KPS’ power system features two kites which fly up to an altitude of 1500 feet. Both kites are attached by tethers to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out.  This technology has the potential to transform the global offshore wind generation market, as it is cheaper to manufacture and requires less construction and installation materials than conventional wind turbines (See Notes to Editors).

Economy Secretary Keith Brown said: “Scotland has a long and proud history of innovation and Kite Power Systems’ pioneering approach to harnessing wind energy shows great promise.
“The company has recently relocated from Essex to Glasgow and this £2m investment from the Scottish Investment Bank will enable it to expand further and demonstrate the latest iteration of its kite power technology in Scotland.

“Scotland has recently moved into the top group of EU nations as regards innovation performance, and the commercialisation of novel ideas – such as the technology being developed by Kite Power Systems – will help to drive us even further forward.”

David Ainsworth, KPS Business Development Director said, “This very welcome new investment from the SIB is an endorsement of the extensive R&D work the KPS team has carried out and is a further vote of confidence in our technology and our business. Along with the support of our other investors, this backing will accelerate KPS’s commercial development plans towards deploying lower cost, deep-water offshore wind energy on a global scale.”

Iain Scott, Chief Financial Officer at Scottish Enterprise, who attended the visit, said: ”Scotland has an excellent track record in renewables innovation, and Kite Power Systems’ decision to move to Scotland is testament to our reputation in this area. Kite Power Systems is a great example of an ambitious and innovative company operating in this sector, and we look forward to continuing to work with the company to build on the success of its prototype.”

KPS has already built a team of 20, mainly engineers and aims to grow to 34 by the end of 2017. The company’s management and design engineering team are based in Glasgow, with a further team of test and development engineers based at the test facility, 8km south east of Stranraer.

The company has been flight testing its current 40kW system there over the past few weeks and has secured planning consent to deploy the new 500kW power system,   following delivery of the completed model during August 2017. This will lead to a planned onshore demonstration array of multiple 500kW systems within the next 3-4 years, elsewhere in Scotland.  Thereafter, KPS will develop a 3MW onshore system at the test facility and then deploy a similar sized power system in offshore waters.

Lower capital and operational costs means that kite power generation would not need government subsidies and could be deployed in UK and Irish waters (and other areas of the North Sea) and in waters up to and potentially deeper than 40m found offshore of countries such as Portugal, Japan and the USA.  KPS’s kite power technology can also be deployed onshore.

For further information /downloadable images & film footage:
Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd)
David Ainsworth, Business Development Director: / +44 (0)7966 937146

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 0141 553 1115 / 07831 156333 /

Notes to Editors
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels.  In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. While there are other high altitude wind power systems under development around the world, the patented KPS system is unique and KPS, established in 2011, is the only British company active in the kite power market.
  4. Prior to the £7million investment by E.ON, Schlumberger, Shell Technology Ventures and the SIB,  KPS had invested more than £3m in technology development, with financial support coming from the UK Government (via DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and Innovate UK), Shell’s GameChanger programme and private investors.
Scottish Investment Bank
The Scottish Investment Bank (SIB) is the investment arm of Scotland’s main economic development agency, Scottish Enterprise, operating Scotland-wide in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise. It manages a suite of co- investment funds including the Scottish Co-investment Fund and the Scottish Venture Fund,  partly funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), Renewable Energy Investment Fund and the Scottish Recycling Fund. SIB is the cornerstone investor in the privately-managed Scottish Loan Fund, managed by Maven Capital Partners and an investor in Epidarex Capital’s life sciences fund. Our investment funds support Scotland’s SME funding market to ensure businesses with growth and export potential have adequate access to growth capital. We also provide a team of Financial Readiness specialists to help companies prepare for new investment and access appropriate finance.

KPS Open Day

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

Kite-power-systems-open-day

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Kite Power Systems strengthens senior management team

Monday, June 12th, 2017

Colin Palmer

Kite Power Systems (KPS), the Scotland-based company developing kite power generation technology and the only company in the UK that is active in the high altitude wind power sector, has appointed Colin Palmer as their Delivery Director. Colin, who had until recently worked for SSE, will be responsible for the development and delivery of KPS’s pioneering 500kW power system and the company’s first onshore and offshore kite power generation projects.

At SSE between 2008 and 2017, Colin had primarily focused on offshore windfarm development.  He was the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm Development Project Manager for nearly five years leading the project to consent in March 2014.  Colin was also Asset Manager for SSE on the Forewind (Dogger Bank) Offshore Windfarm Development Joint Venture.   Before SSE, Colin worked at Airtricity in the UK, Ireland and the USA working in various onshore wind project and business development roles.

Colin Palmer said: “I am delighted to be joining KPS at this key point in the company’s evolution. I believe the product that we are developing has significant potential to be a disruptive, low-cost, wind energy technology, and that we have talented people here to deliver it.  I am very excited to be leading our product development programme as we drive the business towards commercialisation.”

Colin, aged 37, has a Masters in Engineering Project Management from the University of Strathclyde.

For further information:
Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd)
Colin Palmer, Delivery Director:
Paul Taylor, Taylor Keogh Communications: +44 (0)20 8392 8250 / +44 (0)7966 782611 /

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 0141 553 1115 / 07831 156333 /

Notes to Editors
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels.   In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. In December 2016, KPS secured £5million of new investment from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures to support KPS’s technical and commercial development.

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Temporary testing at Castle Kennedy for Kite Power Systems

Monday, February 20th, 2017

Temporary testing of innovative new kite power technology will take place at Castle Kennedy airfield during the latter part of February and throughout March.

Kite Power Systems (KPS) confirmed the temporary testing will take place in the run up to the company commencing development work in April at its permanent  research and test facility at West Freugh, 8km south east of Stranraer.

The company’s Business Development Director, David Ainsworth explained, “Our current planning consent for our new 500 kilowatt system allows for in-flight testing at West Freugh between April and September, thus mitigating any possible impacts on wintering populations of Greenland White Fronted Geese and Hen Harriers in that locale.  The same level of constraint does not apply at Castle Kennedy airfield and so securing agreement from the Stair Estate to use the airfield allows us to test our 40 kilowatt system for some extra weeks, making a great head start to our development programme in Scotland.”

Mr. Ainsworth also confirmed that the company had successfully recruited four engineers to be based at the test facility and is currently looking for an electrical engineer to complete the initial test team. Further technical support is also being provided by Dumfries and Galloway based Natural Power Consultants.

In December 2016, KPS announced £5million of new investment into the company from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures.

Deployment of the 500kW power system at West Freugh from April this year will lead to a planned onshore demonstration array of multiple 500kW systems within the next 3-4 years.  Thereafter, KPS will develop a 3MW onshore system at West Freugh and then deploy a similar sized power system in offshore waters.

KPS’s kite power technology has the potential to transform the global offshore wind generation market as it is cheaper to manufacture and requires less construction and installation materials than conventional wind turbines (See Notes to Editors).  The lower cost means that kite power generation would not need government subsidies and could be deployed in UK and Irish waters (and other areas of the North Sea) and in waters up to and potentially deeper than 40m found offshore of countries such as Portugal, Japan and the USA.  Kite Power Systems can also be deployed onshore.

For further information /downloadable images & film footage:
Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd)
David Ainsworth, Business Development Director: / +44 (0)7966 937146

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 0141 553 1115 / 07831 156333 /

Notes to Editor
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels.  In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. While there are other high altitude wind power systems under development around the world, the patented KPS system is unique and KPS is the only British company active in the kite power market.
  4. Prior to the £5million investment announced in December 2016, KPS had invested more than £3m in technology development, with financial support coming from the UK Government (via DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and Innovate UK), Shell’s GameChanger programme and private investors.

Kite Power Systems opens new head office in Glasgow

Monday, February 20th, 2017

The British company developing innovative new kite power technology has opened its head office in Glasgow (Scotland, UK).

The move by Kite Power Systems (KPS) consolidates the company’s activities in Scotland, following its recent confirmation of plans to establish a research and test facility on a MoD range near Stranraer and £5million of new investment into the company from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures (announced in December 2016).

KPS will initially be headquartered  in the brand new Tontine Innovation Centre in Glasgow’s rapidly expanding innovation quarter.

KPS plans to recruit an additional 10 key posts, primarily engineers, in the first quarter of 2017. The total headcount will rise to 25 by the end of the first year in Scotland, which will result in KPS moving to a permanent workspace in the city centre later in 2017.

KPS’s management and design engineering team will be based in Glasgow, with a further team of  test and development engineers based at the West Freugh test facility, 8km south east of Stranraer.

The company is currently recruiting for a software engineer, project manager, project engineer and  business development manager to join the Glasgow team and an electrical engineer to complete the initial team of five engineers at the test facility. Further technical support is being provided by Dumfries and Galloway based Natural Power Consultants.

The company has already secured planning consent to deploy a 500kW power system  from April this year. This will lead to a planned onshore demonstration array of multiple 500kW systems within the next 3-4 years elsewhere in Scotland.  Thereafter, KPS will develop a 3MW onshore system at West Freugh and then deploy a similar sized power system in offshore waters.

David Ainsworth, KPS Business Development Director said, “As an important hub for innovation in renewable energy, Glasgow ticked all the boxes as a new KPS head office location. As well as its proximity to our testing facility, the city offers a wealth of resources, expertise and talent in engineering design and manufacture, especially in low carbon industries, its academic institutions are world class and the facilities and support available to KPS through the Tontine Innovation Centre will prove invaluable as we enter this next exciting phase of technology development. That the Tontine was once home to the workshop of famous inventor James Watt is an added inspiration for us.”

Welcoming KPS to Glasgow, Councillor Frank McAveety, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “The news that KPS will be making Glasgow the location for their head office is fantastic news for the city, underlining our attractiveness to innovative companies.   It is no surprise that they have chosen to be based in The Tontine Innovation Centre, which will allow the opportunity for KPS to work collaboratively with other, similar organisations.   We can look forward to exciting developments being made in Glasgow in this sector in the years to come.”

KPS’s kite power technology has the potential to transform the global offshore wind generation market as it is cheaper to manufacture and requires less construction and installation materials than conventional wind turbines (See Notes to Editors).  The lower cost means that kite power generation would not need government subsidies and could be deployed in UK and Irish waters (and other areas of the North Sea) and in waters up to and potentially deeper than 40m found offshore of countries such as Portugal, Japan and the USA.  Kite Power Systems can also be deployed onshore.

ENDS)
For further information /downloadable images & film footage:
Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter @kitepowerltd)
David Ainsworth, Business Development Director: / +44 (0)7966 937146

Paul Taylor, Taylor Keogh Communications: +44 (0)20 8392 8250 / +44 (0)7966 782611 /

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 0141 553 1115 / 07831 156333 /

Notes to Editors
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels.  In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. While there are other high altitude wind power systems under development around the world, the patented KPS system is unique and KPS is the only British company active in the kite power market.
  4. Prior to the £5million investment announced in December 2016, KPS had invested more than £3m in technology development, with financial support coming from the UK Government (via DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and Innovate UK), Shell’s GameChanger programme and private investors.

BRITAIN’S KITE POWER SYSTEMS SET TO FLY FURTHER WITH NEW INVESTMENT

Tuesday, December 13th, 2016

Kite Power Systems secures £5m funding from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures

Britain’s Kite Power Systems (KPS) has secured £5million (US$6.19m / €5.86m) of new investment from E.ON, Schlumberger and Shell Technology Ventures (STV).  The investment will support KPS’s technical and commercial development of its pioneering high-altitude wind power generation technology.

KPS’s kite power technology has the potential to transform the global offshore wind generation market as it is cheaper to manufacture and requires less construction and installation materials than conventional wind turbines (See Notes to Editors).  The lower cost means that kite power generation would not need government subsidies and could be deployed in UK and Irish waters (and other areas of the North Sea) and in waters up to and potentially deeper than 40m found offshore of countries such as Portugal, Japan and the USA.  Kite Power Systems can also be deployed onshore.

This latest investment will support KPS’s plans to deploy a 500kW onshore power system at West Freugh in South West Scotland next year (2017), leading to a planned onshore demonstration array of multiple 500kW systems within the next 3-4 years.  Thereafter, KPS will develop a 3MW onshore system at West Freugh and then deploy a similar sized power system in offshore waters.

Paul Jones, Chief Financial Officer of KPS said: “The new investment from three major international businesses is an endorsement of the R&D work that the KPS team has carried out and demonstrates support for our technology and our business. The backing of these companies will accelerate KPS’s commercial development plans towards deploying lower cost, deep-water offshore wind energy on a global scale.”

KPS was established in 2011 and to date has invested more than £3m in technology development, with financial support coming from the UK Government (via DECC’s Energy Entrepreneurs Fund and Innovate UK), Shell’s GameChanger programme and private investors.

Following Shell’s support to KPS since 2012 through its GameChanger programme, which provides early-stage start-up companies with financial and technical support to demonstrate the practical and commercial viability of their ideas, Shell’s corporate venturing arm STV chose to invest in KPS.

Geert van de Wouw, Managing Director of STV said:  “We have closely followed KPS’s progress over the years and consider that its disruptive wind technology is on the right trajectory towards commercialisation. I have been impressed by KPS’s ability to continuously meet the challenging milestones Shell has set them during this period. Over time, KPS has convinced me that its high altitude kite power solution has disruptive potential for the wind industry. It is an interesting contribution to renewable energy generation and a good fit to explore through Shell’s New Energies business.”

E.ON is headquartered in Germany and is focusing entirely on renewables, energy grids and customer solutions.  Frank Meyer, Senior Vice President B2C & Innovation at E.ON said:  “E.ON has been looking into airborne wind technologies for five years. The approach of Kite Power Solutions has the potential to become a game changer for the wind energy market. 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.”

As a major oil & gas services company, with operations around the world, Schlumberger chose to invest in KPS because the technology has the potential to be deployed in varied locations including offshore oil platforms, remote onshore drilling operations and decommissioned offshore wind turbine towers.

For further information /downloadable images & film footage:
Kite Power Systems (www.kitepowersystems.com  / twitter@kitepowerltd)
David Ainsworth, Business Development Director: / +44 (0)7966 937146
Paul Taylor, Taylor Keogh Communications: +44 (0)20 8392 8250 / +44 (0)7966 782611 /

For Scottish media inquiries
David Budge, Budge PR: 0141 553 1115 / 07831 156333 /

E.ON
Markus Nitschke: +49 201 184 4256 / +49 160 989 5555

Shell Technology Ventures
Natasha Obank: +44 (0)20 7934 5550

Notes to Editors
  1. The KPS power system has two kites that are flown as high as 1500 feet (450m); their tether is attached to a winch system that generates electricity as it spools out. By achieving flight speeds of up to 100mph (45m/s) in 20mph (9m/s) winds, the kite’s tether tension causes the line to rapidly spool out from a drum, which turns a generator producing electricity.
  2. KPS’s technology can reduce the capex of conventional offshore turbines by as much as 50% because its patented power system doesn’t require large quantities of steel or specialist installation vessels.  In addition to the Balance of Plant being lower than traditional wind turbine, Kite Power Systems have a better effective wind efficiency per m² active area. The International Renewable Energy Agency’s Innovation Outlook for Offshore Wind (IRENA, published in October 2016) states a levelised cost of energy (LCOE) for conventional offshore turbines of US$170/MWh in 2015 reducing to US$95/MWh in 2030. Independent assessment of the KPS technology indicates a LCOE of US$62.5/MWh by 2020, reducing to less than US$50/MWh by 2030.
  3. While there are other high altitude wind power systems under development around the world, the patented KPS system is unique and KPS is the only British company active in the kite power market.
  4. With immediate effect, Kite Power Solutions will trade as Kite Power Systems.  Next year, the company will open its research and test facility at West Freugh, a former airbase owned by the UK Ministry of Defence and which is located in south west Scotland.

About Shell Technology Ventures
Shell Technology Ventures (“STV”) is the corporate venture capital arm of Royal Dutch Shell plc (“Shell”). With major offices in Europe and the USA, STV invests in technology companies to enhance the development of new technologies that have the potential to create substantial deployment value in Shell. Continuing Shell’s tradition in venture capital since 1998, STV’s investment focus includes oil & gas, renewable green energy technologies, clean tech and IT. STV co-invests with other corporate investors, venture capital funds and angels and will invest in both early stage and late stage (growth capital) companies. For more information, visit www.shell.com/techventures.


Kite power to take flight in Scotland next year – The Guardian

Friday, October 7th, 2016

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/oct/07/kite-power-solutions-scotland-green-energy


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