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Energy Storage

Oct 8 – Seeking to combine poweOct 8 – Seeking to combine power storage with rising renewable energy supply, U.S. power producer Duke Energy has added battery storage to a large wind farm in Texas. Duke's 36 MW Notrees battery storage project is America's largest battery storage project at a wind farm.r storage with rising renewable energy supply, U.S. power producer Duke Energy has added battery storage to a large wind farm in west Texas.

Conventional gas- and coal-fired power generators are seen to be the biggest losers from an upcoming energy storage boom, as both consumers and grid operators look to employ battery and other storage technologies to preserve intermittent renewable energy supply, a new HSBC report finds.

Sept 8 – ABB and China's BYD have entered a strategic collaboration to develop new solutions for energy storage, used to backstop the fast ramp up of renewables with energy storage in off-grid and on-grid solutions.

ABB's products and technology for grid storage, electric vehicle charging and integrated marine systems, combined with BYD's knowledge in battery technology, "can broadly address worldwide energy storage requirements," the companies said.

Modelling from the Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) suggests large scale power storage utilising gas may soon be a reality. ”First prototypes will be available in 12 months from now with industrial implementation in 24 to 26 months,” Gas to Power Journal was told.

Operator WEMAG plans to start operations of a 5-megawatt battery-based energy storage in Schwerin, northeast Germany, this autumn with a view to earning money with the balancing of grid fluctuations.

New electrolysis stack technology from Canadian developer Hydrogenics offers a megawatt conversion capacity of 85%, paving the way for advanced gas power energy storage. "Creating a highly efficient link between the electrical grid and the natural gas system power to gas unlocks the massive energy storage capacity which we have already built and paid for," Daryl Wilson, chief executive at Hydrogenics told Gas to Power Journal.

UK-based research firm Highview Power Storage and GE Oil & Gas have announced a licencing and technology collaboration agreement to develop large-scale liquid air energy storage (LAES) systems. The technology is “ideally suited” for gas-fired peaker power plants, according to GE who struck the partnership to explore opportunities to improve operations of existing plants through the addition of energy storage.

Feb 19 – The German government has awarded €6.5 billion for E.ON's 5-megawatt energy storage project, named M5BAT (modular multi-megawatt multi-technology medium-voltage battery storage).

Works on the power storage will start in the autumn and E.ON said it expects the facility to start operation in 2015.

The project is a unique battery storage system, E.ON said and will focus on "renewables integration, testing of distributed regulating energy provision to promote grid stability, and power price arbitrage."

Renewable gas – in the form of biogas, syngas or hydrogen – is intended to cover a 5% of Denmark's gas demand by 2020. To achieve this goal, the character of the gas pipelines transmission system needs to change from being a carrier of natural gas to becoming an energy storage system.

A 500 kilowatt-hour peak load shifting unit is to be installed at the Discovery Science Center in Southern California by GE as part of efforts to reduce peak demand on the grid. The GE storage and Princeton Power Systems (PPS) inverter control system is expected to shift 10-20% of daily electrical load to off-peak time periods, freeing up peakload power supply for other users.

The California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has voted in legislation to mandate 1,325 megawatts of energy storage in the state in a move set fast-track expansion of the power-to-gas sector. The PUC vote mandates Pacific Gas and Electric Company, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas & Electric to install extra storage capacity by 2020.

Oct 1 - The Spanish government has halted work on the Castor offshore submarine gas storage plant following more than 200 minor earthquakes nearby, off the eastern coast of Valencia.

The Castor facility is one of the country's biggest investments in gas infrastructure and is meant to cover 30 percent of Spain's daily gas consumption. It was the first European project to issue so-called "project bonds".

Variation in US electricity demand is creating a need for at least 258 gigawatthours (GWh) in storage capacity, according to the latest figures from the US Energy Information Authority (EIA). Availability of greater storage capacity would help decouple power supply from fluctuating demand.

Underground gas storage has emerged as a "supporting tool to gas trading". It is vital to cover variability in gas demand when peaking gas-fired generation is used to balance intermittent renewable power supply, Cedigaz finds.

 

SoCalGas, a gas grid operator in California, is spending £1 million on the cleantech fund LA Cleantech Incubator (LACI) to develop 'renewable natural gas.' "Biogas is one source but, in the future, we expect other pathways such as 'water splitting' through solar chemical conversion and hydrogen electrolysis to provide renewable natural gas," said Jeff Reed, SoCalGas director of business strategy and development.

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News in Brief

China’s fuel demand recovers

May 27 – The Chinese government has lifted restrictions on private travel since April which pushed up demand for transport fuels. Gasoline demand has recovered particularly fast and is expected to return to last year’s levels by June 2020. Wood Mackenzie estimates gasoline consumption to reach 3.4 million barrels per day (b/d) in the second quarter, down just a 0.8% year on year. Diesel or gasoil demand is expected to reach 3.4 million b/d in Q2 2020, a 3% decline year-on-year. Overall, China’s oil demand is seen rise a “modest” 13.6 million bpd, or 2.3%, in the second half of 2020.

Wärtsilä to retrofit CHP in Spain

May 26 – The Finish engine maker Wärtsilä has bagged an order to supply and install a 34SG gas-fuelled engine generating set for Rofeica Energia's combined heat and power plant in Barcelona, Spain. The installation of the gas engine will allow Rofeica to switch the CHP from heavy fuel oil to gas-fuelled operation, reducing emissions.

New York body rejects William’s plans for gas pipeline expansion

May 21 – New York’s and New Jersey’s state bodies for environmental conservation have rejected Williams’ plans for the Northeast Supply Enhancement project, designed to transport 400 million cubic feet per day of gas from Pennsylvania to New York. The state bodies had already denied wetland permits in 2019, but Williams pipeline subsidiary Transco filed another application with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), arguing firm services under the project were agreed with UK’s National Grid for customers in New York City districts of Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island.

UK inflation at 4-year low amid falling energy costs

May 20 – The rate of inflation in the UK has fallen to a four-year low as the pandemic pushed down global oil and fuel prices which translate into lower wholesale power prices. The consumer price index fell to an annual rate of 0.8% in April, down from 1.5% in March, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Deficit grows in German green energy fund

May 19 – German regional grid operator TransnetBW has warned of a growing shortfall in the country’s fund for green energy sources, financed under the so-called renewable energy (EEG) levy. TransnetBW, the TSO in southwest Germany, said “due to the EEG cost allocations defined for 2020, we anticipate there will be a negative year end bank account balance in the high three-digit million euro range for 2020.”

Spanish gas companies ‘resilient’

May 18 – Spain’s regulated gas companies “should prove to be resilient” to external shocks arising from coronavirus containment measures, Standard & Poor’s analysis finds, calculating with an average drop in EBITBA at less than 3% in 2020. A new remuneration framework for 2021-2026, recently enacted by the Spanish government, provides enhanced visibility rated grid operators amid the pandemic.

German electricity prices second highest in EU

May 15 – Taxes and the renewable energy surcharge have pushed up Germany’s household electricity prices to the second highest level in Europe, topped only by prices in Denmark. While Danish households paid 29.2 Euros per 100 kWh on average in the second half of 2019, prices in Germany averaged 28.7 Euros, according to the EU statistics office Eurostat.

Calpine’s Q1 earnings fall

May 14 – Calpine, America’s largest generator of electricity from gas and geothermal, has reported a net income of $128 million for the first quarter of 2020, down from $175 million in the prior year period. Lower commodity margins and unfavourable change in income taxes were partially offset by earnings from hedge positions for the three month ending March 31.

Siemens to supply hybrid plant in the Philippines

May 13 – Berkley Energy has contracted Siemens Energy to build a hybrid power project on the island of Mindoro in the Philippines. The project links 16 MW wind power with battery storage, stabilizing energy supply in a remote location with a weak link to the grid and reducing its dependence on diesel.

U.S. energy emissions fall

May 12 – Energy-related carbon emissions in the United States have fallen more than energy consumption, down 2.8% over the course of last year to 5,130 million metric tons (MMmt). Power sector emissions were down 145 MMmt, due to a switch from coal to gas and renewables. In April 2020, emissions experienced another unprecedented fall in due to Covid-19 lockdowns.

MAN expands Omincare concept

March 11 – MAN Energy Solutions’ service brand has extended its ‘PrimeServ Omnicare’ concept from turbomachinery to the marine and power segments. The one-stop service solution is now also applicable for maintenance of third-party machinery, including engines, turbochargers and related auxiliaries.

MIVOLT launches cooling fluid

May 7 – MIVOLT, part of the British company M&I Materials, has launched two specialist fluids to improve cooling efficiency at data centres. The electricity demand of data centres is forecast to rise to 20% of global supply to accommodate lifestyle changes like 5G internet network, autonomous vehicles and bitcoin mining.

Germany adds 1,300 km to power grid

May 6 – Germany has made progress in expanding its strained power grid. According to the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA), over 1,300 kilometres of new power transmission lines have been built and another 830km approved. A further 3,600km are planned to be built by 2030 to alleviate grid bottlenecks and allow transporting rising volumes of offshore wind southbound.

 

 

 

Oman nationalizes first IPP

May 5 – Manah Power, the first privately-run Independent Power Project (IPP) in Oman, has been transferred to state ownership, following the expiry of a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) between United Power Company and state-owned OPWP. Manah IPP was developed under Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) model, which stipulates an eventual nationalization of the assets – a feature absent in subsequent IPPs.

U.S inventories at record highs

May 4 – Inventories for crude oil and natural gas have reached a new record high in the United States, as fuel demand declines both for transport and the electric power sector. From March 13 – when a national emergency was declared due to the Covid-19 pandemic – to April 24, U.S. commercial crude oil inventories increased by 74 million barrels, or 16%, according to government figures. The acute scarcity of crude storage on April 20 led to a sell-off of future contracts at negative prices.

Wärtsilä to service Argentinean power plant

May 1 – Wärtsilä has signed a 10-year maintenance and service agreement with one of Argentina’s upstream companies. Under the deal, Wärtsilä provides a guaranteed performance for a 57.6 MW onsite power plant in the southern part of Argentina, with excess power sold to the national grid.

Zink-Air batteries for NY

April 30 – Zinc8 Energy Solutions has entered a cooperation with the New York Power Authority (NYPA) to install a zinc-air battery energy storage, backed by $2.55 million in state funding over a three year period. The Zinc8 ESS units can deliver power in the range 20-50 MW, with capacity of 8 hours of storage duration. The project will help New York State achieve its goal of installing 3 GW of energy storage by 2030.