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Preventative Maintenance Ensures Healthy Return on Energy Storage Investment

The strain on the National Grid to supply sufficient power at peak times is becoming increasingly pronounced and the UK is more and more reliant on independents for power generation to stabilise the grid. Our client, a UK power generation company, has several multipower energy generation sites across the UK, providing 290MW of battery storage capacity across the UK.  A recent energy storage project, adds to the portfolio of energy storage investments.

The Challenge

Our client explains why they chose NEC Energy Solutions to provide the battery solution. “Land is at a premium in the UK and we are not allowed to use green field sites which means we are often restricted by the space available to us and the number of containers we can site at each location. More often than not we need a solution which can provide the capacity but within a restricted footprint.

This site is unusual in that there is more space than we are used to; that said we want a partner who has the product and services to support us when the space is restricted.”

The Solution

NEC Energy Solutions provided a 3MW/ 3MWh containerised battery with a small footprint which is ideal for projects where lack of space is an issue. Dale Power Solutions is the first qualified UK partner for NEC Energy Solutions acting as both a reseller and independent contractor.

Batteries were installed in a 53ft long container. A heating and air conditioning system was installed to ensure ambient temperature was always maintained at an optimum level and there is also a built-in fire protection system. The housing had to be reinforced to accommodate the fully loaded weight of 63,500 kg.

Our client goes on to explain why service and maintenance is crucial to the site’s success. “It’s important that the system runs smoothly, and the battery works efficiently. The environment has to be spot on, so we rely on the team at Dale to provide servicing and support ensuring any issues are dealt with swiftly. We need to be ready to store surplus power and then release it back into the grid when needed and these times vary, so it’s essential that the battery is primed to function at all times.”

Lance Lewis, Sales & Marketing Director at Dale Power Solutions believes that a thorough maintenance programme is key to battery resilience. “A battery has an expected lifespan of up to 15 years, but this is dependant of regular maintenance and servicing. We want all of our clients to see a healthy return on their investment and so we deliver a thorough preventative maintenance programme to ensure reliable performance over the batteries’ lifetime. Management information, coupled with big data analytics of all installation’s performance, is key to all our servicing support. Field information keeps our clients, engineers and support team fully informed – good information is the key to great support.”

Results

  • A battery system able to deliver power at peak times such as as TRIADS. Businesses are able to adjust their consumption and avoid charges accordingly
  • Frequency response – when the national power grid dips below 50 HZ it’s an indication that the National Grid is struggling to meet demand
  • An energy storage solution allows the provider to charge the batteries when power prices are at a lower cost and then sell back to the grid at a premium when the extra power is needed
  • Aggregator is used to monitor and control the battery system to ensure optimum performance
  • Customised enclosure to accommodate the extremely heavy equipment
  • Healthy return on investment thanks to preventative maintenance programme

Business end-users are charged for using the electricity network at certain peak times of the year through the Transmission Network Use of System (TNUoS) charge. TRIAD refers to the levy paid during the three half-hour periods of demand on the networks over the winter months. The charges are calculated on your average demand across three periods, between 1 November and the end of February. Historically, they occur between 4pm and 7pm Monday to Friday.

TRIAD charges are expected to rise by 40% by 2020.