World Bank Group (WBG) is powering new markets for battery storage
“Accelerating Battery Storage for Development” is a new, first-of-its-kind global program to accelerate the deployment of battery storage for energy systems in developing and middle-income countries. The WBG is committing US$1 billion in financing for the program. It also aims to fundraise US$1 billion in concessional climate funds, through channels such as the Climate Investment Funds’ Clean Technology Fund, and mobilize at least another US$3 billion from the public and private sectors. The goal is to finance 17.5 GWh of battery storage by 2025 – more than triple the 4-5 GWh currently installed in all developing countries.
Batteries boom enables world to get half of electricity from wind and solar by 2050
According to the New Energy Outlook (NEO) 2018 published by Bloomberg NEF, by 2050 50 per cent of the world’s electricity generation will come from wind and solar, enabled by reductions in cost of battery storage, allowing electricity to be stored and discharged to meet shifts in demand and supply. Falling battery prices are partly responsible for the change in the electricity mix over the coming decades, by making it possible to finesse the delivery of electricity from wind and solar. The NEO forecasts US$548 billion being invested in battery capacity by 2050, two thirds of that at the grid level and one third installed behind-the-meter by households and businesses.
IRENA’s latest report captures the potential of using hydrogen as a source of energy storage
In September 2018, IRENA released their technology outlook which focuses on hydrogen’s role in the energy transition. The report recognises the potential of hydrogen as a source of storage for renewable electricity, facilitating the integration of high levels of variable renewable energy into power systems. The focus of the report is on a so called power-to-hydrogen model rather than a power-to-electricity model, noting the benefits of the former. A key advantage of the hydrogen model is that it can be stored on a large scale, enabling the system to cope with large swings in demand and allows for inter-seasonal storage.
The battery boom could end up burning some investors
Energy storage devices are transforming the energy system and investment into battery start-ups rose to US$1.5 billion in the first half of the year, almost twice the level in 2017. About US$16.7 billion has already been spent to install conventional battery factories around the world, and another US$42 billion of facilities are expected to be operational by 2022. However, the development of new technologies may mean investments into current lithium-ion technologies prove uneconomical. The International Energy Agency predicts that after 2025 new technologies are likely to enter the market and lithium-ion technologies may fall out of favour as a result. Until then however lithium-ion is forecast to remain the market’s dominant source.
Hyundai enters stationary storage market with Greensmith partnership
Korean carmaker Hyundai has partnered with storage integrator and software specialist Greensmith to develop second life battery products. Together they hope to build “a continuous, global supply chain” spanning battery manufacturing, EV sales, stationary storage deployment and end-of-life recycling. The companies are creating a 1 MW/h storage system composed of second-life batteries from the Hyundai Ioniq Electric and Kia Soul Electric cars.
The global race to build the world's biggest battery
A number of large scale projects have been announced this year in South Korea, the UK, Australia, Germany and the USA. Projects include LSIS and Macquarie Capital Korea’s 175 MWh battery storage system spanning five sites in Korea, and Vistra Energy’s 300 MW/1,200 MWh Moss Landing Energy Storage project in the USA. Whilst the majority of projects will use traditional lithium-ion batteries, EWE Gasspeicher’s 120 MW/700 MWh project in Germany plans to fill 100,000 cubic meters of salt caverns with brine to create a massive redox flow battery.
Africa and the Middle East
Lightsource BP joins Egyptian construction group to develop solar projects
The joint venture between Lightsource BP (a PV developer) and HA Utilities (subsidiary of Hassan Allam Holding) will offer solar and energy storage solutions in Egypt. The projects will service both residential as well as commercial customers. Egypt has set renewable targets of 20 per cent of the country’s energy mix by 2020, providing opportunities for storage solutions.
DEWA tests energy storage systems at Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park with Amplex Emirates
Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has launched a pilot project to install and test a 1.2 MW/7.2 MWh Sodium Sulphur Battery Energy Storage System (NaS BESS) at the largest single-site solar park in the world. In support of the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, DEWA are developing a business model to become the world’s first digital utility, using autonomous systems for renewable-energy and storage, increasing the use of AI, and delivering digital services.
ZOLA Energy touts latest US$20 million debt finance drive for energy storage projects in Africa
ZOLA Energy (previously Off Grid Electric) leases and sells solar home kits to individual households in Tanzania, Rwanda, Ghana and the Ivory Coast. ZOLA Energy has made the decision to use lithium-ion batteries in its business model for Africa. The company has secured US$20 million in debt financing which will allow ZOLA to expand its solar-plus-storage pay-as-you-go solutions into an additional four African countries, to improve overall energy access and health outcomes.
Salt melting process begins at Kathu Solar Park
SENER and ACCIONA Industrial have initiated the salt melting process at Kathu Solar Park Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plant in South Africa. The molten salt storage system will enable 4.5 hours of thermal energy storage. The use of molten salt as thermal energy storage system will allow the CSP plant to operate cost-effectively to satisfy peak demand.
Battery fever grips China's stock market
Chinese technology company Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd (CATL) has become the most valuable company on China’s ChiNext stock exchange upon listing in June this year. The IPO, backed by Goldman Sachs, saw the lithium battery maker raise almost US$1 billion for expansion in battery manufacturing capacity. CATL is the world’s largest electric-vehicle battery maker, holding strategic agreements with automakers Yutong and Geely, owner of the Volvo and Lotus brands, and supply agreements with the likes of BMW, Honda and Toyota.
Projects under construction in first half of 2018 almost equal China’s total capacity so far
Energy storage projects under construction across four provinces of China during the first half of this year will, when completed, almost double the total cumulative capacity of the nation’s operational energy storage systems, according to a new report commissioned by not-for-profit China Energy Storage Alliance (CNESA). The report suggests that projects in Jiangsu, Henan, Qinghai and Guangdong provinces alone will bring an additional 340.5 MW of battery storage capacity to the country.
Sapphire renewable energy hub wins approval – solar and storage to come
Renewable energy developer CWP Renewables has revealed that it has received planning approval from the New South Wales state government for a 200 MW solar and storage add-on initiative to the 270 MW Sapphire wind farm in northern NSW, Australia. The ambitious expansion will extend the state’s largest wind farm into a fully operational wind, solar and battery hybrid project. Construction of the solar farm and battery infrastructure is expected to commence in early 2019 and, once completed, will create one of Australia’s biggest renewable energy hubs.
India will be home to world’s first ever thermal battery plant
Bharat Energy Storage Technology Private Limited (BEST) has announced the development of a thermal battery manufacturing plant in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, as a means of producing high energy density storage devices. The plant, which is expected to become operational by May 2019, will initially only have an annual capacity of 1,000 MW but will quickly expand to 10 GW within the next decade. The project is just the latest push by the private sector to support the federal government’s goal of reaching 175 GW of capacity from renewable sources by 2022.
US Trade & Development Agency backs 41 MW wind-solar-storage project in India
The United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), an independent body established to advance economic development in developing and middle income countries, has provided a funding grant for a 41 MW hybrid solar-wind storage project in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The grant, designed to aid the project’s technical design and planning, is just the latest capital backing by the USTDA in wind, solar and energy hybrid projects in India.
Revealed: True cost of Tesla big battery, and its government contract
Details of the costs and revenues of the Hornsdale Power Reserve 100 MW/129 MWh battery, owned by French developer Neoen, and (famously) switched on by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, have been revealed in the share registration document supporting Neoen’s planned initial public offering. The capital cost of the battery was €56 million. The facility is reported to have earned €8.1 million in the first half of 2018, including €1.4 million from a services contract with the South Australian government (covering 70 MW of capacity), and a further €6.7 million from merchant market sales from the remaining 30 MW/90 MWh.
Siemens pilots the use of ammonia for green energy storage
Siemens is opening a £1.5 million pilot project in Oxfordshire, UK employing ammonia as a new form of energy storage. The project will turn electricity, water and air into ammonia without releasing carbon emissions. The ammonia is then stored in a tank and later either burned to generate electricity or sold as fuel for industrial purposes. In addition to generating electricity and fuel sales, Siemens believes that its technology may be able to extract the hydrogen from the ammonia in the future for use in hydrogen powered vehicles and the wider hydrogen economy.
RedT's vanadium flow energy storage to be deployed on grand scale in Germany
RedT, a UK-headquartered energy storage company, has brokered a deal with developer Energy System Management to provide its storage tanks for a two-phase project consisting of two 40 MWh grid-scale projects in the first phase and projects comprising 690 MWh in the second phase. RedT’s storage tanks are based on vanadium redox flow technology which is intended to provide four hours of Secondary Control Reserve to the Austrian and German grids. Once financial close occurs, the project is expected to begin construction in 2019.
UK's Storelectric brings compressed air storage to the Netherlands
Storelectric, a UK energy storage start-up, recently won the NAM70 Challenge and will partner with Dutch energy company NAM (jointly owned by Shell and Exxon) to investigate how to repurpose oil and gas infrastructure for energy storage use. Storelectric’s technology is based on compressed air energy storage (CAES) stored in salt caverns. However, rather than venting the heat generated during compression from the air, the company stores the removed heat and uses it later to reheat the air during expansion (a process known as adiabatic CAES), thereby increasing efficiency.
SUSI Energy Storage Fund reaches €252 million final close
The SUSI Energy Storage Fund, the world’s first dedicated energy storage infrastructure fund, recently received capital commitments of €252 million from institutional investors from Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Sweden and Switzerland. Since the fund’s inception in 2017, it has already completed two investments of approximately €90 million into projects that include lithium-ion batteries and flywheels and is working on investments in four additional projects for another €90 million.
Leclanché's main investor ups the ante with US$76 million injection
Leclanché, a Swiss-based vertically-integrated battery and energy storage system and equipment maker, recently secured US$76 million from its primary investor, FEFAM, an investor group aggregated from four "sub funds". This investment, combined with FEFAM’s previous investment of US$51 million, fully funds Leclanché’s business plan through to 2020, when the company expects is EBITDA to be positive. Leclanché has confirmed orders of more than 50 MWh of battery storage systems for 2018 and anticipates it will hit 100 MWh of energy storage deployments by the end of this year.
Germany crosses threshold of 100,000 home battery storage systems
Residential battery storage systems are growing in importance in the German energy storage market. Since 2013 battery costs have fallen by over 50 per cent, making the energy transition more affordable and expanding “flexibility options” open to grid operators for intelligent load management, while bolstering energy security.
Led by surging residential sector, Q2 US energy storage deployments grow 200 per cent year-over-year
The Energy Storage Association and Wood Mackenzie Power and Renewables (formerly Greentech Media Research) reported that, for the first time ever, the United States saw more residential energy storage than utility storage deployed in a single quarter. Both California and Hawaii currently hold the residential market lead, accounting for 72 per cent of the MWh totals, with Massachusetts and Arizona vying for the number three spot.
PG&E proposes world's biggest batteries to replace South Bay gas plants
California investor-owned utility PG&E has requested approval from regulators to build four large storage facilities in South Bay, California, in an effort to use batteries instead of gas to ensure grid reliability. The request includes two of the largest battery systems ever proposed: a 300 MW/1,200 MWh project to be developed by Vistra Energy and a 182.5 MW/730 MWh project from Tesla. The scale of both of these projects would break the record for largest storage capacity, a record that is currently held by Tesla’s 100 MW Australian system. The projects originated from the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) decision to overrule gas generator Calpine’s request for a “reliability must run” status for three of its plants, and CPUC’s subsequent instruction to PG&E to seek out storage alternatives.
North America’s largest customer-sited battery to date deployed in Ontario
A commercial 10 MW/20 MWh system, developed by Convergent and supplied by IHI Energy Storage in Ontario, is set to match two utility-scale storage projects for the largest power capacity built in North America this year. The focus of the storage device is on the accurate prediction of the province-wide system peak for five hours in the year, and the reduction of the customer’s load during those hours. This focus differs from the approach taken by commercial storage projects in the US, which typically focus on reduction of a customer’s monthly peak to diminish a demand charge. To de-risk the investment, Convergent financed the project on balance sheet and pitched the product as a shared-savings agreement, meaning that if the system does not create savings, then the customer has no obligation for any fees.
NRSTOR C&I and IHI, Inc. execute agreements for eight projects in Ontario, Canada
NRStor C&I and IHI Energy Storage announced plans to deploy eight behind-the-meter lithium-ion battery projects of 42 MWh aggregate capacity in Ontario, Canada, all expected to be operational by 2019. NRStor C&I will develop the systems under a turn-key build, own, and operate business model where no-capital outlay is required from the customer. IHI Energy Storage will deliver the battery, inverter, energy storage software, temperature-controlled enclosure, full balance of plant and a full wrap of the system, including a warranty and operations and maintenance for the life of the project.
Latin America and the Caribbean
NEC ES, NGK deploy storage in new territories in Brazil and Middle East
Lithium and sodium sulfur batteries will be used for the first time in new territories, after NEC ES and NGK inked deals to deliver projects to an island archipelago in Brazil and in Dubai respectively. For the Brazil deployment, Neoenergia has contracted NEC Energy Solutions to deliver a lithium-ion battery energy storage system to the islands, on the company’s scalable DSS (Distributed Storage Solution) platform. The size of the initial deployment was not given by NEC ES, which announced the news, but the DSS platform can be configured from 100 kW to 710 kW for power and 85 kWh to 510 kWh of energy storage.
Antigua and Barbuda to have new solar power plus energy storage installation
Antigua and Barbuda are moving forward with a combined 10 MW solar PV and 6.5 MWh energy storage installation. The project is being developed by UK-based renewables developer PV Energy Limited and will help the twin islands state achieve its goal of being fossil-fuel free by 2020. The storage installation will provide grid-balancing services, while the total solar production is estimated to provide almost 20 per cent of the country’s total grid capacity.