New Energy Storage System to Demonstrate Reliability and Stability

Gas Natural Fenosa and Toshiba collaborate to demonstrate the use of a transportable lithium-ion battery energy storage system.
Published: Sun 11 May 2014

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Gas Natural Fenosa and Toshiba Corporation are to carry out a collaborative on-site verification testing program of the transportable lithium-ion Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) which is being manufactured by Toshiba.

The goal of the new system, which has a 500kW output and 776kWh capacity, is to help utilities achieve an efficient, reliable and stable distribution network.

Demonstration program’s aims

Through the demonstration program, both companies aim to demonstrate how the distributed Battery Energy Storage System solutions will contribute to the establishment of highly reliable metropolitan distribution networks. The aim is to show how the system can help attain a stable electric power supply during the distribution of large quantities of renewable energy sources. The system will also help to provide a continuous power supply in metropolitan areas during an emergency situation.

Launched last year December, the program will run for five years. It is supported by Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development organization (NEDO), under its program for "Development of Large Scale Energy Storage System with High Safety and Cost Competitiveness."

Excellent features

Toshiba, one of the largest world-wide electronics and electrical equipment manufacturers, is promoting the Battery Energy Storage System by its advanced SCiBTM lithium-ion secondary batteries. The SCiBTM has excellent features which are suited for the system when applied to distribution networks:

  • It is safe to use

  • It provides a long life for over 10,000 charge-and-discharge cycles

  • It has a high effective capacity and low-temperature operation.

Initially, the demonstration will be located at the Alcalá de Henares distribution substation in the suburbs of Madrid. However, there are plans to carry out demonstrations at several sites during the program lifetime to fully assess the various case studies.

The scope of the testing program will include the evaluation of the system’s effectiveness in contributing to peak shaving and the ability of the transportable system to manage the electric supply at specific sites with seasonal or temporary high electricity demand.

In addition, management of power and voltage fluctuations, caused by renewable energy sources, will also be evaluated.

The demand for flexibility on the rise

Gas Natural Fenosa is one of the leading multinational companies in the gas and electricity sector and it operates in 25 countries and has around 20 million customers. The utility operates electric distribution networks in Spain, Panama, Colombia and Moldavia.

The company manages electrical power supply with seasonal and occasional electrical demand fluctuation. The company has realised that rapid increase in renewable energy and distributed generation will call for more flexibility in the power system.

It is for this reason that the company is investing in storage technologies which can be integrated in various electrical systems.

Spain has achieved much success with its renewable energy goals. Last year, renewable energy accounted for a whopping 49.1% of the country’s total installed capacity. That figure was encouraged by increases of 173 MW and 140 MW for wind and solar, respectively.

It therefore makes sense that energy storage solutions are implemented in order to fully harness the potential of this clean energy.