National Grid and Renewable Energy Systems are working on the first battery energy storage systems to provide a dynamic frequency response service in sub-second timescales in the UK.
The parties have signed a four year contract where RES will provide 20MW of frequency response from battery storage.
This is a new service that will help National Grid in performing its system balancing role, which increasingly requires the use of new technologies.
RES’ says its battery storage systems will provide frequency response to the grid within one second of the detection of a frequency deviation.
The battery storage systems will be fully operational within 18 months.
RES and National Grid have been working together to design this service since 2014. This was a forerunner to National Grid’s upcoming tender for 200MW of Enhanced Frequency Response.
As the price of battery energy storage has fallen in line with gigawatt scale deployment in the stationary energy storage and electric vehicle fields, such services are reducing electricity costs for consumers across global markets.
RES has already commissioned six similar projects in North America.
Adam Sims, senior account manager at National Grid said: “This service and the forthcoming Enhanced Frequency Response service will support the network as we transition to a generation mix with greater levels of low cost renewable energy.”
John Prendergast, energy storage manager at RES, said: “RES has previously pioneered the delivery of very fast frequency services in Canada and is one of the largest providers of such services in the US. Now, developing this innovative service with National Grid is a major step in the development of RES’ UK energy storage business.”
The progress of this project is important as it signals a possible new direction for energy storage in the UK.
This March the National Infrastructure Commission released a report called Smart Power. The central finding was that smart power — principally built around three innovations, interconnection, storage, and demand flexibility — could save consumers up to £8 billion ($11.5 billion) a year by 2030, help the UK meet its 2050 carbon targets, and secure the UK’s energy supply for generations.
“This contract will play an important role in encouraging policy makers and regulators to accelerate the removal of barriers to wider deployment of energy storage in the UK,” says Prendergast.