Advances in Electricity-Storage Technology

first_imgAdvances in Electricity-Storage Technology FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Utility Dive:2017 could go down as the year regulated utilities took the lead in energy storage.Several of the most notable energy storage projects this year were done by or for regulated utilities. And that momentum will likely carry into 2018 as well, Tim Gretjak, an analyst at Lux Research, told Utility Dive.In some cases, it is easier for a regulated utility to make the economic case for energy storage, Gretjak said. It is hard for developers of energy storage projects to compete in energy markets where the rules do not value the flexibility that storage can provide, he added. The trend could be bolstered by the fact that utilities across the country are beginning to include energy storage in their resource planning processes. In Oregon, for instance, Portland General Electric’s integrated resource plan proposes five storage projects. In New Mexico, the Public Regulation Commission amended the state’s 2017 IRP rules to include energy storage. High on the list of notable projects of the year is Tucson Electric Power’s (TEP) solar plus storage facility. The project is being built by NextEra Energy and features a 100 MW solar array and a 30 MW, 120 MWh energy storage system. It’s most notable feature, however, is its power purchase agreement.TEP reported that the all-in cost for the solar-plus-storage project was “significantly less than $0.045/kWh over 20 years.” TEP said the solar portion of the project, at under 3¢/kWh, was “the lowest price recorded in the U.S.” That puts the remaining storage portion of the project at about 1.5¢/kWh.The project marked the lowest price announced for a solar-plus-storage project to date, far outstripping the nearest contender, a 11¢/kWh PPA between Kauai Island Electric Cooperative and AES Corp. for a 28 MW solar array with a 20 MW, 100 MWh battery system on Kauai, Hawaii.Another of the year’s most notable projects also is in Arizona, but is being developed by Arizona Public Service. It is a much smaller project, 2 MW, 8 MWh, but is notable because it is being undertaken without a statutory or regulatory mandate.APS is building the project as an alternative to building about 20 miles of new transmission lines to serve the small community of Punkin Center about 90 miles northeast of Phoenix.APS has not disclosed the cost of either the storage project or the transmission lines, but estimates the batteries will enable it to defer investment in a new transmission line for up to six years. And during that time, the batteries will also deliver additional value by providing frequency regulation and bolstering grid reliability.T&D (transmission and distribution) deferral is a growing trend, especially among regulated utilities, Manghani told Utility Dive, but such efforts are also very specific, particularly when any individual  project can require regulatory approval.Another T&D deferral project recently surfaced in Massachusetts where National Grid has plans to install a 48 MWh energy storage system on the island of Nantucket. The storage project will help back up a new diesel generator on Nantucket and defer investment in a new subsea cable to the island.In North Carolina, Duke Energy in April won regulatory approval to build a 10 kW solar installation with a Fluidic 95 kWh zinc-air battery in the Great Smoky Mountains of Haywood County. The energy storage system will power a remote communications tower in the national park that is currently served by an overhead transmission line.Duke says the microgrid project, which would cost less than $1 million, is less expensive than upgrading and maintaining the existing four-mile 12.47-kV distribution feeder that travels over rugged mountain terrain and is due for upgrades this year.The project demonstrates the “practicality” of energy storage, Gretjak said.Duke also plans to invest $30 million in two battery storage systems in North Carolina, which the company says will be the first large storage projects built by its regulated utility. “Battery technology has matured, and we are ready to take the next step. We can go to regulators and say this makes economic sense, Duke spokesman Randy Wheeless told Utility Dive at the time.Energy storage once again made market inroads this year, as it did last year, by responding to emergencies. Last year, energy storage’s value was on display when it was called on to respond to the Aliso Canyon gas leaks that threatened gas supplies to power plants critical to reliability in Southern California. Following a call by state regulators, developers stepped up to quickly build several large storage projects to support grid reliability in the region. One of those project, Powin Energy’s 2 MW, 8 MWh battery system in Irvine, came online in January.In March, Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted that he could solve blackouts that have been plaguing South Australia by installing a battery storage system in 100 days or it would be free. Tesla made good on Musk’s promise this week, nearing completion of a $50 million, 100 MW, 129 MWh storage system at Neoen’s 315 MW Hornsdale wind farm. The storage system, which would be the largest in the world, is expected to come online Dec. 1.The Tesla project could soon be overshadowed by a massive 100 MW, 500 MWh storage system that is expected to “be the cornerstone of a new smart energy grid” in Hubei Province, China. The vanadium flow battery project is being built by Hubei Pingfan Vanadium Energy Storage Technology Co., a subsidiary of Hubei Pingfan, a mining and industrial metals and minerals company that has about 1 million tonnes of vanadium in its reserves.The China project may not have much overlap with U.S. projects because the energy markets in the two countries are so different, but China’s push could demonstrate the value of flow batteries and might aid the economies of scale for the technology. More: Top energy storage projects driving the sector in 2017last_img read more

Fitch: Solar capacity in U.S. could jump by 100 gigawatts by 2030

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Magazine:Fitch Solutions Macro Research has released a report, Midwest U.S. Set To Experience Strong Growth In Solar Sector, which makes some very bold predictions about the future of the solar industry in America’s heartland.Chief among those bold predictions, Fitch states that it expects the region to contribute heavily to the 100 GW of solar power capacity expected to come to the United States over the next 10 years. This astronomical, gargantuan, whichever word of scope you use to describe, prediction is supported mainly by the region’s large proposed solar project pipeline, with a total potential added capacity of a smidge under 79 GWac that are registered within the MISO, SPP and PJM generation interconnection queues – the grid operators that cover the region.Fitch expects that this unprecedented development will be driven by the strengthened renewable energy targets of Midwest states, cities and utilities. Chiefly among these targets, Fitch references Wisconsin’s 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050 goal, the 100% renewable electricity pledges made by Chicago, IL and Madison, WI, DTE and Xcel’s plans for carbon neutrality by 2050 and the litany of renewable energy-based requests for proposals sweeping the region.Strangely, the report doesn’t address the trend of large corporations increasingly adopting renewable generations to fulfill their power needs. The report, however, also attributes the projected growth to year-over-year improvements in the technologies associated with solar projects, the ever-falling costs of developing and installing solar and the expanding adoption of community solar initiatives in the region.That last point is an especially interesting one, as in 2019 utilities in Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska all launched their first community solar programs, with most being so successful that they led to over-demand and filled their capacities nearly immediately.These projections by Fitch paint an incredibly bullish view on the future of solar development, one more optimistic than the projections made by Solar Energy Industries Association and Wood Mackenzie. These two organizations are currently projecting a 2019 solar market of 12.6 GW, with Fitch estimating an annual Midwest average growth of 83% of that figure. Obviously, the expectation is that those annual additions would increase exponentially so that the biggest additions are being made at the end of the decade. The 79 GW project pipeline only includes projects to be completed through 2023, so, if even a third of that goes on-line, that would lend major credence to the optimistic projections of the region as a whole.More: The Midwest’s solar future will be unlike anything seen before Fitch: Solar capacity in U.S. could jump by 100 gigawatts by 2030last_img read more

EIA: Wind now the leading source of renewable generation in the U.S.

first_imgEIA: Wind now the leading source of renewable generation in the U.S. FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享CNBC:Last year saw wind generation in the U.S. overtake hydroelectric generation for the first time, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).Released Wednesday, the figures from the EIA’s “Electric Power Monthly” report show that yearly wind generation hit a little over 300 million megawatt hours (MWh) in 2019. This was roughly 26 million MWh more than hydroelectric production.Wind now represents the “most-used renewable electricity generation source” in the U.S., the EIA said.Overall, total renewable electricity generation — which includes sources such as solar photovoltaic, geothermal and landfill gas — at utility-scale facilities hit more than 720 million MWh in 2019, compared to just under 707 million MWh in 2018. To put things in perspective, generation from coal came to more than 966 million MWh in 2019.According to the EIA’s “Today in Energy” briefing, which was also published Wednesday, generation from wind power has grown “steadily” across the last decade.At the end of 2019, the country was home to 103 gigawatts (GW) of wind capacity, with 77% of this being installed in the last decade. The U.S. is home 80GW of hydroelectric capacity, according to the EIA.[Anmar Frangoul]More: Wind has become the ‘most-used’ source of renewable electricity generation in the USlast_img read more

Australia testing possibility of reusing underground coal mine as a pumped hydro project

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:Australia is studying plans to transform a disused underground coal mine into a pumped hydro facility, part of a wider effort to reuse retiring fossil fuel sites for renewable energy generation.The A$13 million ($9.9 million) pilot trial at the Newstan Colliery, in Fassifern, about 140 kilometers (87 miles) northeast of Sydney, could offer a blueprint for dozens of expiring mines that’ll be retired in coming decades, according to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency.Studies will test whether the Centennial Coal Co. site, close to Lake Macquarie, can eventually support a 600-megawatt pumped hydro facility that would take advantage of its reservoir, grid connection and available water source. The results will also show if similar brownfield sites, including other coal operations, could also host renewables, ARENA said in a Friday statement.“By repurposing old sites and taking advantage of the features at those facilities, we can bring more clean energy projects online that bring down emissions and deliver the secure and reliable power Australians need,” Australia’s Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor said in a separate statement.Pumped storage hydroelectric power plants, which push water uphill at times of low demand and then release it downhill to drive turbines that generate electricity when needed, have huge capacity for energy storage and can help back up intermittent generation from wind and solar plants.The Newstan trial is one of several similar projects in Australia. Genex Power Ltd. is planning to install a 250-megawatt pumped-hydro facility at a former gold mine in Queensland, along with solar and wind resources. At the former Drayton coal mine in New South Wales, Malabar Resources has won approval to develop a 25-megawatt solar farm.[Rob Verdonck]More: Old coal mines can win a second life as green energy hotspots Australia testing possibility of reusing underground coal mine as a pumped hydro projectlast_img read more