Jordan’s government could have 30MW / 60MWh electricity storage plant finished by April 2019

on February 23, 2018

Energy-Storage-NewsThe government of Jordan has given parties interested in delivering a 30MW energy storage system in the Kingdom six months to come up with technical and financial offers.

Following a July 2017 Request for Submissions of Interest (REOI), issued by the country’s Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (MEMR) on which it was advised by Fichtner, in late December the ministry qualified 23 interested parties to submit further details of their proposals, from a field of 41 interested companies.

The REOI called for the development of energy storage projects in two phases, with the first to be a 30MW / 60MWh electricity storage plant, at a substation in Ma’an currently used to integrate the output of several PV plants onto the grid. The second phase’s scope and size is to be determined.

The phase one plant would be used for ramp-rate control of PV and wind power generators in the local area, to reduce the amount of thermal generation required for spinning reserve and to shift renewable energy generated off-peak to times of peak demand, limiting the amount of grid curtailment required.

Jordan’s National Electric Power Company (NEPC) would be in charge of dispatching power from the plant based on the grid’s requirements while the project company would be operating the plant for 15 years. Phase one is pencilled for completion by April 2019.

National newspaper Jordan Times reported that it had spoken this week with MEMR minister Saleh Kharabsheh, who confirmed that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed with the 23 bidding companies for implementing the project, which it is estimated will cost US$40 million.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsJordan’s government could have 30MW / 60MWh electricity storage plant finished by April 2019

Removing Barriers for Energy Storage

on February 23, 2018

Last week, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved a rule to foster the development of energy storage, a vastly improved form of generation we think will be fundamental in supporting a grid congested with variable power supplies.

FERC Order 841 will “enhance competition and promote greater efficiency in the nation’s electric wholesale markets, and will help support the resilience of the bulk power system,” the commission said.

The order enables energy storage resources to compete in wholesale power markets and levels the playing field with conventional sources of generation. It removes barriers to participate in capacity, energy, and ancillary services markets administered by Regional Transmission Organizations (RTO) and Independent System Operators (ISO) by recognizing the “physical and operational characteristics” of the resource.

The order comes more than a year after FERC concluded the rules governing the wholesale purchase of conventional sources of generation barred energy storage from participating in the markets offered by RTOs and ISOs.

This may be the beginning of a boon in the development of utility-scale storage in the U.S., and will thus lead to greater efficiency. That’s because energy storage can absorb and store electricity produced by wind and solar power projects for later use when demand is higher. What’s more, further decline in the cost of energy storage is highly likely as development accelerates.

The new order, however, does not include aggregated distributed energy resources (DER), despite demands to give DERs the ability to participate in wholesale markets. FERC said it wanted to gather more information before eliminating the barriers preventing DERs from competing in wholesale markets.

A Public Necessity

Energy storage projects using rechargeable batteries will give grid managers the solutions they need to fill production gaps created by sharp fluctuations in wind and solar power. The ability to supply utility-scale power on demand will be key to ensuring reliability and achieving integration amid this renewable revolution.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsRemoving Barriers for Energy Storage

Boeing HorizonX Ventures Digs Deep Into Wallet To Acquire Energy Storage Firm Cuberg

on February 22, 2018

CleantechnicaA little over a month ago, we reported that Cuberg was a potential candidate for Boeing’s HorizonX Venture project in order to further its electric airplanes (e-plane) ambitions. The company announced it had agreed to purchase the Californian-based energy solution maker.

Boeing understands all too well that it needs to kickstart its battery development into high gear if it wants to cement its presence as one of the electric aerospace giants of the future. In order to prove it was serious about e-planes, it announced its first investment of the energy storage company Cuberg.

Spun off from a Stanford University research project and backed by several financing rounds and grant funding, the Berkeley startup was aiming at the next-generation battery technology for potential aerospace and industrial applications three years ago. The company focused its efforts on developing advanced battery cell designs that could generate high-energy density with a lithium metal anode, high-voltage cathode, and a proprietary electrolyte. All of this is forced through a high-voltage cathode for high energy density and resilient thermal qualities. Cuberg now hopes to use this as a drop-in solution to existing large-scale battery manufacturing processes.

And speaking of Boeing, guess what this ties into?

According to Steve Nordlund, vice president of Boeing HorizonX: “Cuberg’s battery technology has some of the highest energy density we’ve seen in the marketplace, and its unique chemistries could prove to be a safe, stable solution for future electric air transportation.” That means the previous Boeing investment in the Zunum Aero project we wrote about before means using an electric aircraft is closer than we expect.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsBoeing HorizonX Ventures Digs Deep Into Wallet To Acquire Energy Storage Firm Cuberg

Renault is trying to create a ‘smart electric island’ with electric vehicles, V2G, and energy storage

on February 22, 2018

ElectrekAfter embracing electric vehicles, Renault has also launched its own new energy subsidiary to develop energy storage and grid products.

The French automaker is now combining both efforts to help create a “smart electric island” with electric vehicles, V2G, and energy storage.

They are partnering with energy supplier Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira partner to “facilitate the energy transition” in Porto Santo island, Portugal.

The small island of ~5,000 residents is rolling out a program called “Sustainable Porto Santo – Smart Fossil Free Island” to get rid of all polluting source of energy.

Solar arrays and wind farms are already deployed on the island, but now they want to electrify the car fleet and add energy storage to the grid in order to maximize the use of the local renewable energy.

Renault’s role in the project will be to incorporate electric vehicles in the equation.

They describe the program in 3 phases:

  • First, 20 volunteer users in Porto Santo will drive 14 ZOEs and 6 Kangoo Z.E.s for their everyday use. These vehicles will be able to benefit from smart charging thanks to the 40 connected public and private charging points set up by EEM and Renault on the island.
  • Second, by the end of 2018, the vehicles will step up their interaction with the grid by providing it with electricity during peak hours. In addition to being smart charged, the electric vehicles will therefore also serve as temporary energy storage units.
  • Third, second-life batteries from Renault electric vehicles will be used to store the fluctuating supply of energy produced by Porto Santo’s solar and wind farms. Stored as soon as it is produced, this energy is recovered by the grid as and when needed to meet local demand. Some of these batteries come from Madeira Island. For the first time, Groupe Renault demonstrates real life re-employing of second-life batteries in a local ecosystem.

Renault has previously installed electric car charging stations powered by the same used EV battery packs.

Eric Feunteun, Electric Vehicles and New Business Programme Director at Renault, commented on the project:

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsRenault is trying to create a ‘smart electric island’ with electric vehicles, V2G, and energy storage

Solar-Storage for Homes: PetersenDean Partners With SolarEdge and LG

on February 22, 2018

Greentech-MediaSolar module-level power electronics maker SolarEdge has been quietly putting its own solar-battery inverter control system, dubbed StorEdge, into the field over the past couple years. But energy storage still makes up only a tiny fraction of its growing share of business in the highly competitive global solar inverter industry.

On Tuesday, SolarEdge announced a big new partner in the solar-storage space that could change that equation.

PetersenDean Roofing & Solar, the largest privately held U.S. solar and roofing company, announced that it’s pairing the StorEdge systems with 9.8-kilowatt-hour LG Chem batteries to provide homeowners “an affordable path to solar ownership and energy storage.”

It’s not the first solar-storage partnership for PetersenDean — the company has worked with Sunverge and Sonnen in the past. CEO Jim Peterson has called solar-storage the “new backbone for the future of our nation’s electric power and renewable energy industries,” indicating the company’s interest in finding a cost-effective way to bring the combination’s full array of capabilities to market.

While Tuesday’s announcement didn’t reveal pricing, in an August 2017 review of the StorEdge-LG system, Greentech Media priced a typical system at $9,950 — $5,550 for the battery, $2,600 for the inverter, and the rest for the meters, transformers and communications systems. That’s a hefty premium over a simple rooftop solar system, and quite a bit more than the cost of a backup generator that could provide homeowners a similar level of security against grid blackouts.

But Petersen noted in Tuesday’s announcement that customers will “save substantially in the long term” by storing excess solar energy to draw upon later, whether to avoid “unnecessary fees and taxes,” or providing “flexibility in an ever-changing utility landscape.”

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsSolar-Storage for Homes: PetersenDean Partners With SolarEdge and LG

FERC order opens ‘floodgates’ for energy storage in wholesale markets

on February 21, 2018

Utility-DiveThe Federal Energy Regulatory Commission last week unanimously approved an order that could prove to be a landmark in the development of energy storage.

FERC’s order “opens the floodgates for storage participation” in wholesale power markets, Ravi Manghani, director of energy storage at GTM Research, said.

Order 841 directs operators of wholesale markets — Regional Transmission Organizations (RTOs) and Independent System Operators (ISOs) — to come up with market rules for energy storage to participate in the wholesale energy, capacity and ancillary services markets that recognize the physical and operational characteristics of the resource.

A level playing field

“The rules will codify mechanisms that will establish a level playing field that, ideally, is relatively comparable across regions,” Daniel Finn-Foley, senior energy storage analyst at GTM Research, told Utility Dive.

FERC specifies that those rules must:

  • Ensure that a storage resource can provide all the services it is technically capable of providing,
  • Ensure that an energy storage resource can be dispatched and can set market clearing prices as both a buyer and a seller,
  • Account for the physical and operational characteristics of storage resources through bidding parameters or other means,
  • Establish a minimum size for participation in RTO/ISO markets that does not exceed 100 kW, and
  • Specify that the sale of electricity from the RTO/ISO markets to a storage resource that the resource resells must be at the wholesale locational marginal price.

FERC gave RTOs and ISOs nine months to file tariffs that comply with the order and another year to implement those tariff provisions.

Finn-Foley called the FERC rules “a starting point” for the development of energy storage projects in wholesale markets. “It is as if the industry has had one hand tied behind its back,” Finn-Foley said.

Growth through fiat

Much of the growth in energy storage to date has come about through regulatory fiat, such as California’s mandate to use storage to fill the capacity gap left by the Aliso Canyon methane leaks.

Aliso Canyon proved energy storage can provide capacity, Finn-Foley said, and with the right market design it could provide capacity services in other markets, as well. He cited research by GTM that shows energy storage will be competitive with new build gas-fired peakers in five to 10 years. But that can’t happen unless the right market mechanisms are in place, he noted.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsFERC order opens ‘floodgates’ for energy storage in wholesale markets

India’s largest energy storage project is of ‘strategic importance’ for regulators

on February 21, 2018

Energy-Storage-NewsThe start of construction on India’s largest energy storage project is not only of strategic importance to regulators, but could also drive another wave of utility-scale projects in India, the chief of the country’s storage alliance has said.

AES India, a subsidiary of AES Corporation, and Mitsubishi Corporation started work this week on the 10MW project that will support the network operated by Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited (Tata Power-DDL), a distribution company (Discom) that serves the North and North-West parts of Delhi. Energy-Storage.News reported in January 2017 that what is claimed to be India’s first grid-scale energy battery storage project is designed to aid the integration of rooftop solar in particular.

Rahul Walawalkar, executive director of the India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA), told Energy-Storage.News this week: “The AES project is expected to demonstrate the multiple value proposition of energy storage for the distribution grid such as peak shaving, distribution upgrade deferral, reactive power support as well as ancillary services for improving distribution grid reliability.”

Walawalkar also said the project was of “strategic importance” for Indian regulators, given that the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) had already released a staff paper on energy storage last year.

The project would act as a “great confidence booster” for policy makers, such as NITI Aayog, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and Ministry of Power (MOP), who are working on a National Energy Storage Mission. In this way, the new project will go towards addressing questions about technology readiness, added Walawalkar.

India’s National Solar Mission (NSM) was particularly successful in driving the local PV market to become the third largest in the world last year, and the nation will be eyeing up similar success in energy storage.

The AES, Mitsubishi project being deployed in Rohini, Delhi, at a substation operated by Tata Power-DDL will enhance grid reliability for more than 7 million customers across the Delhi region.

Storage technology and services company Fluence, a Siemens and AES joint venture, will supply AES’ grid-scale Advancion technology platform for the project. The Advancion solution is designed to provide long-term dependability. The project should also demonstrate storage’s ability to balance distributed energy resources, including rooftop solar, said Praveer Sinha, CEO and managing Director, Tata Power-DDL.

The Tata Discom has already implemented smart grid technologies with AES and Mitsubishi, leading the way in India with several country-firsts.

The Indian renewables sector has been described as having it’s “head in the sand” in terms of future grid integration challenges, so the deployment of large-scale storage will be welcomed. Only this week, the head of consultancy firm Bridge to India expressed surprise at roughly 2GW of solar tender issuances in the state of Karnataka as he forecasted troubles with grid integration and balancing of such a heavy solar load, particularly as the state also has significant amounts of wind capacity.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsIndia’s largest energy storage project is of ‘strategic importance’ for regulators

Hawaii Solar Permits See Sharp Decline in 2017

on February 20, 2018

Greentech-MediaThe number of rooftop solar permits issued in Hawaii fell significantly in 2017. But solar advocates say they’re are cautiously optimistic the market will soon turn a corner despite ongoing struggles.

On the island of Oahu, the state’s largest solar market, a total of 2,993 PV system permits were issued last year, according to data collected by Marco Mangelsdorf, president of Hilo-­based ProVision Solar. That number compares to 4,591 permits issued in 2016 and 7,493 permits issued in 2015 — representing declines of 34 percent and 60 percent, respectively.

The all-time peak for solar permits issued on Oahu was in 2012, when the Honolulu Department of Planning and Permitting processed 16,715 applications. Compared to that banner year, the figure for 2017 was 82 percent lower.

Other islands also saw permits plummet year-over-year. Permits fell by 28 percent on Hawaii’s Big Island (from 1,256 in 2016, to 906 in 2017) and by 59 percent on Maui (from 1,657 in 2016, to 676 in 2017). Last year’s total on Maui was down a whopping 80 percent from 2015.

The change stems from the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission’s decision to end the net energy metering (NEM) program for Hawaiian Electric Co. utilities, including the Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) on Oahu, the Maui Electric Company (MECO), and the Hawaiian Electric Light Company (HELCO) on Hawaii Island.

“Hawaii rooftop PV peaked in 2012-2013 and has been losing solar steam ever since,” Mangelsdorf wrote in an email. “With the elimination of NEM by our PUC in October 2015, one of the main incentives to go PV has been diminished as lesser attractive interconnect programs (Customer Grid Supply and Customer Self Supply) were introduced.”

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsHawaii Solar Permits See Sharp Decline in 2017

Nova Scotia Power pioneers new energy storage system using Tesla Powerpacks

on February 20, 2018

InhabitatNova Scotia Power has established a pilot project that utilizes Tesla’s Powerpack 2 home batteries and their utility-grade Powerpack batteries to form an improved energy storage system for local wind power. Based in Elmsdale, the Intelligent Feed Project aims to bridge any gaps found in the electrical grid by installing Powerpacks where wind turbines are generating surplus energy. These batteries would allow power to be stored for later use, perhaps when there is a power outage or a windless day. While the Powerpack’s expansion into Nova Scotia isn’t quite as massive as its application in places like South Australia, this latest move demonstrates its potential to improve energy storage in power grids.

The Elmsdale battery station will serve 300 homes, 10 of which will have Tesla Powerpack 2 batteries. Partially funded by the Canadian government, the trial program will begin at the end of February and will continue until 2019. The physical infrastructure of Powerpacks will remain even after the trial has ended. If the trial is successful, Nova Scotia Power may decide to offer additional programs to local communities

Simply bringing the Powerpacks into the homes and neighborhoods of Elmsdale seems to be having a positive impact on engagement in clean energy infrastructure. “The Powerwall, that was something I hadn’t heard about,” said homeowner Mark Candow. “I was definitely intrigued.” The ease-of-installation and the interactive app provided by Tesla are certainly selling points for consumers. “The ability to monitor their home usage is really making them think more about how they’re using electricity in their home,” said smart grid engineer Rob Boone, “and I think it’s going to make them more energy efficient.”

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsNova Scotia Power pioneers new energy storage system using Tesla Powerpacks

Alfen to Supply Energy Storage System to Belgian Grid Operator Eandis to Prepare for the Future

on February 20, 2018

Eandis is a distribution grid systems operator with activities in 229 cities and municipalities throughout Flanders in Belgium, responsible for 2.7 million electricity connections. Eandis recently added some 375 kWp rooftop solar power to its logistical center in Lokeren. To match the intermittent solar energy production with its own operations, it is now implementing Alfen’s battery energy storage system called TheBattery. TheBattery contributes to the increasing electrification of the site, enabling the shift from fossil fuel powered machinery and vehicles towards electricity as source of energy.

Jean Pierre Hollevoet, Director Asset Management and Supply Chain at Eandis comments: “With the new energy storage system of Alfen, we will be able to optimize self-consumption of the solar energy in our facilities, which is an important new step towards an energy neutral and sustainable distribution center. Alfen has an 80-year track record and deep technical knowledge of developing complex battery storage systems. In addition, we anticipate that more and more customers, connected to our electricity grid, will implement energy storage systems in the future. We want to be prepared for the incorporation of such systems in our grid and therefore we want to gain experience on manageability, cost-of-ownership and impact on operational efficiency of such a storage system.”

Energy storage system TheBattery

Alfen supplies a 140kW energy storage system that will be connected to Eandis’ logistical center. Alfen also delivers and implements the remote management and control of the system and provides a platform which enables Eandis to use the system for optimizing self-consumption of renewable energy and voltage control. Yves Vercammen, sales manager for Alfen in Belgium, comments: “We welcome this opportunity to use our storage system and decades of power grid experience in this project. The collaboration with Eandis shows that we are operating at the heart of the energy transition with a unique integrated offering dedicated to enable the energy grid of the future. This project demonstrates the increasing demand for decentralized renewable energy solutions that require smart energy solutions.”

The storage system will be operational in Q1 2018.

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Fractal Energy Storage ConsultantsAlfen to Supply Energy Storage System to Belgian Grid Operator Eandis to Prepare for the Future