Benefits of Battery Storage
Energy storage technology is being hailed globally as the game-changer toward reliably managing low-carbon, greener electricity grids. This technology is envisioned as a critical component in reducing global warming, improving air quality, promoting energy independence and stabilising a national energy grid powered by fluctuating wind and solar resources.
The suitability of a storage technology is determined primarily by its power and energy capacity and the rate at which these can be stored and delivered. While there are a wide variety of energy storage technologies on the market, including Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) and Pumped Hydro, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are currently leading the market. These Li-ion battery units have one of the highest energy densities of battery technologies, are low weight and perform with high cycle efficiency. Newer technologies include sodium sulfur (NaS) batteries, which have a much lower rate of self-discharge, extending their temporal energy storage capacity.
Enerco currently has planning permission for multiple battery storage sites across Ireland, with construction held back only by the current bottleneck in grid applications. These battery storage sites will generally consist of a network of battery units, housed in repurposed shipping containers and accompanied by control units and associated grid infrastructure.
Some examples of international large-scale battery storage sites currently in operation can be seen on the right, with Japan's largest NaS facility at the Buzen Power Plant on the top (50MW, 300MWh) and North America's largest Li-ion facility in Escondido, California on the right (30MW, 120MWh).