Assessing the Role of Liquid Air Energy Storage in Energy Policy

One such technology that is gaining increased attention is Liquid Air Energy Storage (LAES). In this article, we will explore the role of LAES in energy policy and its potential to revolutionize the way we store and utilize energy.

Understanding Liquid Air Energy Storage (LAES)

Liquid Air Energy Storage is a technology that involves converting air into a liquid form, storing it in tanks, and then using it to generate electricity when needed. The process begins by compressing ambient air and cooling it to a temperature below -196°C (-320°F), causing it to liquefy. The liquid air is stored in insulated tanks until it is required, at which point it is heated, expanding rapidly into a gas that drives a turbine to generate electricity.

Key Takeaway:

  • LAES provides a sustainable and efficient means of storing and releasing energy.
  • The process involves converting air into a liquid form and utilizing it to generate electricity.
  • The technology can help balance renewable energy supply and demand.

The Role of LAES in Energy Policy

As governments and policymakers worldwide strive to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the share of renewable energy in the energy mix, energy storage technologies like LAES play a crucial role. Here are some key reasons why LAES is gaining attention in energy policy:

Flexibility in balancing energy supply and demand

One of the key challenges facing renewable energy sources is their intermittent nature. Solar and wind power, for example, are dependent on weather conditions and the availability of sunlight or wind. LAES can help overcome this issue by providing a scalable and flexible energy storage solution. The stored energy can be released to the grid when demand is high or when renewable generation is low, ensuring a constant and reliable energy supply.

Integration with existing infrastructure

One of the advantages of LAES is its compatibility with existing energy infrastructure. Unlike some other energy storage technologies, LAES can easily integrate with power grids, making it a viable option for retrofitting existing power plants or industrial facilities. This seamless integration reduces the time and cost associated with the deployment of new storage projects, making LAES an attractive option for policymakers looking to maximize the utilization of existing resources.

Long-duration energy storage

LAES has the potential to store energy for much longer durations compared to other storage technologies. This is particularly important as the world moves towards a greater reliance on intermittent renewable energy sources. Long-duration energy storage allows for increased grid stability, reduces curtailment of renewable energy, and ensures a smooth and continuous supply of electricity to consumers.

Key Takeaway:

  • LAES offers flexibility in balancing energy supply and demand.
  • The technology can integrate with existing energy infrastructure, reducing costs and deployment time.
  • LAES enables long-duration energy storage, critical for the increasing use of renewable energy sources.


Liquid Air Energy Storage has emerged as a promising technology that can address the challenges associated with the integration of renewable energy sources into the grid. Its ability to balance energy supply and demand, integrate with existing infrastructure, and provide long-duration storage makes it a valuable asset in the energy policy landscape. As nations strive to transition towards sustainable energy systems, LAES could play a significant role in transforming the way we store and utilize energy.

As we assess the role of LAES in energy policy, it is evident that this technology has the potential to revolutionize the energy storage sector. By harnessing the power of liquid air, we can pave the way for a greener, more reliable, and sustainable energy future.

UK Government – Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy
Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE