Battery Energy Storage System
Currently, electricity must be used as soon as it is generated; whatever is not used is simply wasted. Storing electricity in a battery will reduce waste and improve efficiency.
Reducing waste & improving efficiency
Beyond replacement generation, BELCO is investing in a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS), which will shift reserve power from being inefficiently held on running engines to being held in a stationary capacity within the batteries.
BESS is a lithium ion system that will store generated power to use when needed. These batteries have an output capacity of 10 MW for 30 minutes, allowing them to efficiently provide reserve services and respond to major generation disturbances that may occur.
The batteries come assembled in shipping containers, along with separate power conversion system containers and transformers to change the energy from alternating current to direct current and back again.
Each container holds battery cells, inverters, controllers, relays, fans and a fire suppression and detection system.
These containers have a high corrosion rating and will not be visible from either the road or neighbouring buildings.
Safety is built into every level of the system architecture, which has been designed to mitigate events at the cell level and eliminate events at the container level.
The battery cells have a 10-year warranty and 20-year operating life.
At the end of their lifespans, they will be shipped back to the US and disassembled as part of a recycling plan.
We expect the BESS to save $2 million per year on fuel and maintenance costs; it will pay for itself within four years.