Challenged with the rising contribution of inherently intermittent wind and solar power supply, network operators are investing billions in stabilising their power grids. To anticipate supply/demand patterns and avoid overloaded grids, GreenCom Networks has developed an “Open-innovation Lab” with live data from end-customers. The system links electric cars, PV systems, heat pumps and other energy equipment in Germany and France.
Greensmith Energy, a part of Wärtsilä group, has completed two grid-scale energy storage systems in Texas. Called ‘Texas Waves’, the two 9.9-MW short-duration storage facilities are fed by E.ON’s 249-MW Pyron and the 197-MW Inadale wind farms, both near Roscoe, delivering energy on short notice to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).
Arenko Group, a leading energy storage systems operator, has selected GE to deliver a 41-MW battery – one of the largest in the UK – to supply power on demand to approximately 100,000 homes. The grid-scale energy storage is designed to enhance efficiency of power transmission, balance renewable energy supply and help reduce customers’ energy bills. To be sited at a strategic location in the Midlands, the battery storage will commence operations in 2018.
Some 50,000 houses in South Australia will be equipped with solar panels and Tesla batteries, the state government announced Sunday, in a move to turn decentralized gensets in buildings a giant interconnected Virtual Power Plant (VPP). According to Tesla, the VPP will have 250-MW of solar energy and 650 MWh of battery storage.
The February 2018 futures contract for natural gas on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) is trading at a discount to the current spot price. This pricing pattern provides economic incentives to withdraw natural gas from storage to avoid exposure to the spot market.
Jan 17 – California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has ruled that Calpine needs to replace three gas-fired peaking power plants with energy storage facilities by 2019, “if feasible and at a reasonable cost to ratepayers.” Calpine had initially sought regulatory permission to maintain “must-run status” for the two 47-MW peaking plants in Feather River and Yuba and a 605-MW gas power plant in Metcalf.
Energy storage technologies like batteries create an “unusual combination of cost and revenue streams,” according to EIA analysts, given that they can serve as both energy suppliers and consumers at different times. Thanks to their versatile functionality, about 700 MW of new utility-scale batteries has been added to the US power grid over the past three years.
UK Power Reserve, developer of decentralized energy, has hit the milestone of 500MW of flexible power plants in operation. Pointing out its strong track record in translating prequalification results into Capacity Market contracts, UKPR said it “fully expects its portfolio will surpass a gigawatt at the capacity market auction in February.”
Fluence, the new joint venture by Siemens and AES Energy Storage, has started operations at the start of this year, backed by a dedicated financing programme from Siemens Financial Services, and a substantial contract to supply a 400MWh battery system in California.
Operators of Drax, the UK’s largest coal power station, are staging a series of events to inform the wider public about plans to repower up to two of the plant’s remaining coal-fired units with gas and adding a large battery storage system. If the repowering proceeds as planned, Drax will be expanded with two combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power units with a combined capacity of 3,600-MW and a battery storage system of up to 200-MW.