Energy Storage

Italian marine classification society RINA has approved a design for a compressed natural gas (CNG) storage system aboard vessles, which is being used as gas feed at a fuel oil peaking power plant retrofitted to run on gas in Grati, Indonesia. The 300MW unit is "the world's largest CNG storage system," according to RINA.

July 30 - Samsung Electronics Co and S&C Electric Co have joined forces to develop an energy storage project that could save Britain up to £300 million annually once 2 GW of storage is installed by 2020.

The project comes at a cost of £28.5 million and will be capable of storing up to 10 MW-hours of electricity.

As part of a 'smart grid' feasibility study, energy storage company ITM Power has launched an upgrade to its hydrogen-producing HGas electrolyser on the Isle of Wight, UK to allow more solar and wind power to come on the grid safely. Sponsored by the UK government, the study examines how HGas electrolyser units produce hydrogen gas from surplus renewable power that utilities can sell as fuel to natural gas consumers and power plants.

In an effort to curb energy bills, Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is using Kitakyushu City as a test bed for a hydrogen storage system integrated with controller software, solar panels and industrial CHP (Combined Heat and Power) backup. The City of Yokohama, Toyota City, and Keihanna are also part of the Japan Smart City Portal experiment, which began in 2010 and ends in 2014.

Electricity storage technologies, operating on hourly or daily timescales, tend to be deployed to take advantage of variations in the price of electricity. Researchers at the US Energy Information Administration point out that energy storage increases security of power supply as it flattens the daily load shape and integrating variable generation like wind.

May 28 - Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and the California Energy Commission have launched a battery energy storage system pilot project in east San Jose to better balance power needs of the electric grid.

The project launch was made possible following a $3.3 million grant from the Energy Commission to PG&E that will help fund the installation and evaluation of the system.

Jan 25 - Duke Energy Renewables, part of Duke Energy's Commercial Businesses announced the completion of North America's largest battery storage project at its Notrees Windpower Project in west Texas.

The 36 MW energy storage and power management system completed testing and commenced operations in December.

Sept 21 - Going into the winter withdrawal season, gas storage volumes in the UK are on healthy levels on soft European demand for UK gas through the Interconnector, Deutsche Bank analysts said today.

Month-to-date Interconnector flows have averaged 9mcm/d this year versus 52mcm/d last year in early September (excluding the maintenance period), the bank said in a weekly commodity report.

Volumes in the UK are nearly equal to that seen last year, even with the large withdrawal in September, compared with a net injection last September into medium-range storage.

Sept 12 - Installed thermal energy storage capacity in the U.S. is forecast to rise to 7.2 GW by 2020, up from 2.7 GW in 2011, according to Pike Research.

The annual U.S. market for incremental thermal energy storage capacity totals $268 million, with 246 MW of new capacity installed in 2011, Pike Research, a part of Navigant's Energy Practice, said in a report published on Wednesday.

The strongest growth for thermal energy storage is expected to occur in Europe, as market development is supported by the European Commission's efficiency initiatives and the rise in volatile renewable electricity generation.

„Under a conservative estimate of 2020 market activity, there will be about 19 GW of cumulative thermal energy storage installations in Europe by the end of the decade, equaling 2 GW of new capacity per year by 2020," analysts at Pike Research said in the report.

Thermal energy storage is used to better utilise surplus electricity generatated at solar plant projects by storing heat for later power generation.

August 28 – ABB has been commissioned to launch the largest battery energy storage project of its kind in Switzerland together with EKZ, a power distribution utility.

ABB supplied EKZ with battery energy storage solution using Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries that can provide one megawatt of power during 15 minutes.

The storage facility is integrated into EKZ's power distribution network and is being used to evaluate
performance in key areas such as balancing peak loads and intermittent power supply, and the viability of the solution for grid optimization.

August 17 - Germany's municipal utility Stadtwerke Neustadt solar power developer IBC Solar have inaugurated a pilot project to store up to 200 kWh of electricity within a local grid area.

If the utility's solar plants produce more power than is required, the energy can be stored and supplied to the grid at a later point, online media solarserver.de reported on Friday.

The power storage unit helps to stabilises the local grid and reduced the need for further regional grid expansion.

Decentralised energy storage can play an important role within the context of tomorrow's smart grid, next to demand response by means of flexible power generation, an Eurelectric report finds.

Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries has published a document entitled "MHI Environmental Vision 2030", setting out how to reach its economic targets while developing sustainable technology. One key objective is to strengthen efforts on developing technology for energy storage, MHI said.

Users of electricity storage facilities can take advantage of daily variations of the electricity prices to reduce their overall energy costs. The EIA is supporting the use of electricity storage technology as a step towards a more efficient utilisation of electricity.

March 19 - Siemens has installed a Siestorage energy storage solution at an Enel-operated pilot plant in Italy.

The plant has an output of one megavolt ampere and a capacity of 500 kilowatt-hours, Siemens' Infrastructure & Cities division said today.

The Siestorage energy storage solution was installed in Enel's the medium voltage electricity distribution network. Enel, Italy's biggest electricity producer, utilises Siestorage to a Smart Grid solutions for voltage regulation with the aim of integrating renewable energy sources into the medium voltage network.

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News in Brief

AI predicts peak in power use

Nov 20 – ABB and Verdigris Technologies have developed machine-learning algorithms to predict unplanned peaks in electricity consumption and help avoid them. The Energy Forecasting app will enable users to reduce their electricity bills by reducing peak demand charges.

India’s first UHVDC link commissioned

Nov 19 – GE Grid Solutions has commissioned Pole-3 - the ultra high-voltage direct current (UHVDC) transmission line in India, capable to transmit 4,500 MW of electricity. Once completed the Champa-Kurukshetra UHVDC project will be expanded to transmit 6,000 MW of electricity at 800 kV, serving customers in the areas of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh.

COP25 urged to step up climate efforts

Nov 18 – The COP25 UN climate conference in Madrid is urged to enshrine greater commitments from the world's industrialised nations to curb their greenhouse gas emissions. “Europe will have to play a key role in this regard,“ environment minister Svenja Schulze said, adding Germany's recently announced climate package marks a "restart" in the country's climate policy.

Wärtsilä launches ‘Expertise Centre’ in Singapore

Nov 15 – The Finish technology group Wärtsilä has chosen Singapore as the location for its latest Expertise Centre (EC) that provides operational support and dynamic maintenance planning, both for marine and energy business customers. All of Wärtsilä’s Expertise Centres combined currently monitor some 900 installations with more than 2,000 engines around the world.

U.S. storage injection hits record high

Nov 14 – Near-record volumes of natural gas have been placed into storage in the United States in the current injection season. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the amount of gas held in storage in 2019 surged from a relatively low value of 1,155 billion cubic feet (Bcf) at the beginning of April to 3,724 Bcf at the end of October.

SaskPower proceeds with Moose Jaw project

Nov 13 – Canadian utility SaskPower has taken a significant step towards realizing a 350 MW gas power plant at Moose Jaw. The project was first proposed in 2017, but in the Canadian federal government June last year introduced new regulations for gas generation coming online after January 1, 2021, which stalled the plans. Having completed its regulatory review, Sask Power was now granted permission to proceed from the municipality of Moose Jaw. Major Fraser Tolmie said “this $700-million investment into the city of Moose Jaw, will ensure we have base-load power in the province of Saskatchewan and to maintain our power independence.”

Sembcorp powers up first BESS unit in the UK

Nov 12 – Sembcorp Energy UK, part of Singapore-based Sempcorp Group, has started to operate the first 60 MW unit of its battery energy storage system (BESS) fleet, supplied by GE. Combined, the three storage units in Leicestershire and Cheshire will bring Sembcorp Energy UK’s total energy portfolio to 973 MW.

Global gas glut may clear in 2021

Nov 11 – Economics of exporting American liquefied natural gas to Europe no longer add up. With Henry Hub spot prices around $2.7/MMBtu, moving LNG cargoes from the U.S. Gulf Coast to Europe is “not workable,” BP analysts said, indicating that production shut-ins could help clear the massive supply overhang towards the end of 2021.

Gazprom reassures Germany of Ukraine gas transits

Nov 8 – Alexey Miller, chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, has been trying to reassure the German government commissioner Georg Graf Waldersee that Russia was ready to signing a new transit contract with Naftogaz if both companies mutually waive claims. Before gas flows can proceed, however, Ukraine will have to create an independent gas transmission operator by January 1, 2020.

GE makes gains in wind power

Nov 7 – GE Power is gradually turning away from its loss-making fossil power segment to focus on the fast-growing renewable business. This week, GE struck a deal for its new Haliade-X turbines to be used at Dogger Bank Wind Farms. The three 1.2 GW Dogger Bank projects, situated offshore the UK’s Yorkshire coast, are expected to trigger approximately £9 billion of capital investment between 2020 and 2026.

PetroVietnam eyes LNG-to-Power project

Nov 6 – PetroVietnam has signed an agreement with B.Grimm Power Public Company (BGRIM) to jointly study the development of an integrated LNG import and power generation project. The aim is to build a 3,000 MW gas-fuelled power plant and an adjacent LNG import terminal. The location of the project has not been disclosed.

ABB launches ‘Smart City’

Nov 5 – Electrification specialists of the Swiss manufacturer ABB have designed an interactive ‘Smart City’ that contains smart buildings, e-mobility, energy management and data centers. The use of smart technologies and digitalization are encouraged by the United Nations as a way to help decarbonize cities around the world.

Gazprom, BASF cooperate on sulfur separation

Nov 4 – The Russian major Gazprom and the German chemical company BASF have agreed to devise a comprehensive solution for separation of sulfur from natural gas. The aim is to  enhance eco-efficiency of the Astrakhan gas processing plant and improve operational efficiency of BASF’s amine gas treatment units at the Orenburg gas-fired power plant.

Germany’s emission fall ‘markedly’

Nov 1 – Germany is headed for second consecutive year of substantial reductions in carbon emissions, amid a sharp drop in coal-burn in the power sector and an overall decline in energy use in 2019. If this trend continues, the country could get much closer to its 2020 climate target than widely anticipated.

Exmar to refinance Tango FLNG

Oct 31 – Exmar, the Belgian shipping company, is trying to refinance the Tango FLNG vessel, moored offshore Argentina on behalf of YPF. The aim is to generate around $60 million in additional capital, Exmar said, suggesting a deal will likely be struck in the first months of 2020.

Petronet doubles net profit

Oct 30 – Indian LNG importer Petronet has nearly doubled its net profits in the third quarter although revenues fell by 13%. Net profits came in at 1,089 crore rupees ($153.6m), an increase of 90% on the same period in 2018 as the company benefited from India’s lower corporate tax rates. Third-quarter revenues, in contrast, fell to 9,449 crore rupees ($1.33 billion).

Wildfires spread around LA

Oct 29 – Thousands of Los Angeles residents have been evacuated as wildfires spread fast around the metropolis and power outages brought life close to a standstill. The risk of fires caused by overland transmission lines prompted Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) to prolong precautionary blackouts that could last up to three days.