Largest UK energy storage portfolio to come online in 2018

The largest portfolio of energy storage in the UK is set to be up and running by the end of next year, as renewable energy provider Anesco has announced proposals to bring 185MW of energy onto the grid.

The system is expected to play a significant role in balancing the grid, providing a sub-second response to support supply and demand requirements. Anesco’s project is planned for entry into the capacity market in August, after the firm recently connected its twentieth utility scale battery unit, raising its active storage portfolio to 18.9MW.

Reading-based Anesco – which received recognition in the annual Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 league table for its fast-growing sales  – last year became the first firm to install a commercial-scale battery charged by solar power. The firm’s executive chairman Steve Shine believes the company’s latest move is ‘further proof of the significant growth of the sector’.

“We’re delighted that our twentieth energy storage unit is now up and running,” Shine said. “It’s another fantastic milestone to have reached. At Anesco, we’ve long believed that energy storage is a vital part of any renewable energy generation system. That’s why we’ve pioneered its use for many years, working on ways to create a viable model for our customers to be able to implement the technology and start reaping the benefits.

“As well as aiding grid stability, energy storage can help maximise the use of renewable power being generated, while breeding a more resilient local grid. It’s an exciting time for the sector and we predict momentum will continue to grow, as more and more generators look to benefit from the technology.”

Paving the way

Big data analytics start-up LimeJump will commercially operate the scheme, which will join a wide range of storage projects already operating within Limejump’s Virtual Power Plant. Limejump’s portfolio combines speed of response with the flexibility of distributed generators and commercial assets to enable the projects to participate in the UK’s only dynamic frequency response contracts.

Limejump chief executive Erik Nygard said: “Anesco’s speed and expertise in developing energy storage projects is paving the way for this technology to become an integral part of the UK’s future energy mix. The key to bringing more storage online will be to optimise the revenue that can be earned by generators and developers, from securing a good price for power exported onto the grid, to participation in the full range of revenue-generating schemes such as the capacity market.”

The announcement reflects a rapidly booming UK battery storage sector, which is expected to help create savings for the UK in the tune of £8bn by 2030. Delivery service UPS last month revealed to edie it will deploy a “small” local battery storage system at its Kentish Town base, which will be used to systematically charge the firm’s fleet of EVs that are in operation around the city.

It was recently reported that an £18.4m grid-scale battery system in Bedfordshire had proved the technical and commercial viability of energy storage in Britain following an extensive two-year trial. Meanwhile, a pioneering £1m battery storage system in Somerset will transfer power to the local electricity network after linking directly to a nearby 1.5MW solar park.

George Ogleby

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