Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica

Clean Power

Minnesota Wind Farm Battery To Be Restarted

Image Source:: Star Tribune

Xcel Energy, a Minneapolis based utility company, plans to restart a battery bank used for wind energy storage after a potential fire risk prompted its shutdown.

This $4.7 million sodium-sulfur battery bank was operational for two years without a problem, however, a similar battery caught fire in Japan.

It was capable of powering 500 homes for 7.2 hours and was manufactured by NGK Insulators of Nagoya.

After the September 2011 battery fire in Japan, NGK ceased production of the batteries and advised their customers, including Xcel Energy and 19 others in North America, to stop using them. NGK later determined that a faulty cell had leaked molten material, triggering a short-circuit and fire.

“It wasn’t like we had problems,” added Mark Willers, CEO of MinWind III, which owns the adjacent wind farm and substation and sells the output to Xcel. “It ran perfectly.”

The battery was rebuilt by NGK Insulators, and according to Xcel Energy, the battery bank is likely to go back online in February.

“It is a brand-new battery at this point,” Albert Choi, Xcel’s Denver-based manager of next-generation research, said during an interview.

Now that the problem has been identified, this battery bank can continue its important long-term trial which will give the world, and especially utility companies, an idea of one way in which wind energy storage can be done, and also the viability of this system set up by Xcel Energy and NGK Insulators.

Many are still uncertain about wind energy storage, and some flat out say that there is no way it can work, this is why someone has to prove them wrong (or right).

Cheap wind energy storage would solidify the advantages of wind power and make it available to everyone at all times, without wasting any of it. This has the potential to save money as the cost of wasted wind energy normally has to be passed on to consumers.

Xcel Energy has the most wind power generation capacity in the United States, and other utilities like them are considering energy storage to capture the extra electricity generated by wind turbines.

Source: StarTribune Business

Follow me on Twitter: @Kompulsa.

 

Advertisement
 
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
 
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Written By

writes on CleanTechnica, Gas2, Kleef&Co, and Green Building Elements. He has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, and geography. His website is: Kompulsa.com.

Comments

You May Also Like

Clean Power

Killer combo of offshore wind and green hydrogen indicates that rapid decarbonization is achievable, if policy makers do the right thing.

Clean Power

Green hydrogen is going down in cost, and concentrating solar power could pick up the pace by ditching electrolysis in favor of a thermochemical...

Clean Power

Research could improve efficiency for storing renewable energy, making carbon-free fuels, and manufacturing sustainable materials Research News, College of Science & Engineering, University of...

Clean Transport

While the US Postal Service fiddles with gasmobiles, Ford Motor Company launches new E-Transit electric vehicles at the delivery van market.

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.