Aggregating connected energy storage systems to create ‘virtual power plants’ is likely to become a big part of the next phase of storage, according to the executive director of the US-based Energy Storage Association.
Sourced through Scoop.it from: storage.pv-tech.org
>” […] Part of the beauty is that this kind of storage-based ‘multi-tasking’ could be secondary to the main aims of the storage being installed, such as integrating solar.
“You don’t have to do it every day, but on an infrequent basis you can jump into the marketplace to help make money and subsidise all your projects. And, you can do big things for the grid. You will look like a power plant as far as the grid can tell. You can replace the need for a new peaking plant or something like that. [There are] a lot of great things you can do with distributed storage; the sum of [its] parts is greater than the individual pieces.”
Companies are already trialling the concept in various configurations around the world, analyst Omar Saadeh, senior grid analyst at GTM Research, told PV Tech Storage recently. Saadeh said VPPs are one way utilities could use storage to meet “a higher demand for rapidly deployable grid flexibility”.
One example Saadeh cited was a project called PowerShift Atalantic in Canada, which was “designed to manage and mitigate intermittent power from large-scale wind generation, currently totalling 822MW”.
“Through the multiple flexible curtailment service providers, aggregated loads have the ability to balance wind intermittency by responding to virtual power plant dispatch signals in near-real time, providing the equivalent of a 10-minute spinning reserve ancillary service typically executed by pollution-heavy peaker plants,” Saadeh said.
“Since March 2014, the project included 1,270 customer-connected devices with 18 MW of load flexibility, approximately 90% residential.”
Saadeh said Europe has been especially active on the concept, calling France one of the “leading supporters” of such developments.
“They’ve looked at many promising applications including partial islanding, or microgrids, DER-oriented marketplace development, and renewable balancing services.”
German utility Lichtblick, which claims to generate its power 100% from renewables, is another entity which has already got started on VPPs, which it calls a “swarm” of devices. Its battery system providers in VPP programmes include Tesla Energy and Germany’s Sonnenbatterie. Meanwhile another big Tesla partner, SolarCity, also intends to aggregate storage using the EV maker turned energy industry disruptor’s Powerwall for homes. […]”<