Tesla’s Megapack batteries are empowering the UK in many ways. Just a few days ago, it was announced that Tesla will supply 68 megawatt-hours (MWh) of extremely cost-competitive Megapack battery storage to Fotowatio’s second project in the UK, according to Energy Storage News. This is part of Fotowatio Renewable Ventures’ “strategic plan to develop energy storage projects globally.”
The Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) project will have a power and energy capacity of 34MW/68MWh. FRV is partnering with Harmony Energy, a local developer, on the Contego project, which is made up of 28 Tesla Megapack lithium-ion battery systems. It will use Tesla’s Autobidder AI software for real-time trading and control. The construction of the project is planned to begin sometime this month near Burgess Hill in the Mid Sussex District of West Sussex and is slated to be completed in 2021. It will be the new project one of the largest battery energy storage plants in the UK.
Holes Bay Project
The two companies have worked together on the Holes Bay Battery Storage Project, which has had 6 Tesla Megapack batter systems, providing a total capacity of 15MWh, and also Tesla’s Autobidder AI software in operation since June 2020. The Tesla Megapack batteries can store energy from renewable sources and use that energy at times of peak consumption and relatively low production. The cost of balancing the power market skyrocketed this summer due to the effects of the pandemic. It reduced supply and made usage harder to predict. National Grid spent £718 million to balance the network from March to July, which is 39% higher than usual.
Peter Kavanagh, Harmony Energy’s CEO, noted that this utility-scale battery energy storage is “critical to the future of the UK’s energy supply” and batteries are “often seen as the missing link in the UK’s renewable energy strategy, both in terms of controlling grid frequency and providing backup during periods of peak demand and supply.”
The Holes Bay project also participated in the EPEX spot market, Firm Frequency Response (FFR), and the Balancing Mechanism (BM) and was the first site to go live in the National Grid Electricity System Operator’s (ESO) new interface for the BM. Kavanagh emphasized how exciting these developments were when considering “the added challenges of developing these projects during the current pandemic.
“There is real momentum in the development of subsidy-free, utility scale battery storage in the UK as we continue the shift towards a greener economy. The value of battery storage in providing flexibility to the grid continues to increase as the UK’s penetration of renewable energy grows.”
Tesla Is BM’s First User Of Its New Interface
BM’s new interface was made simpler for smaller participants to join. Its new API went live back in September in the system operator’s national control room. The interface aims to open up the market for non-traditional participants to join through what the BM said is a simple, cost-effective, and web-based route.
The API enables providers to connect and communicate in real time with the ESO’s systems as well as the BM as the API offers up an alternative to the fixed-line connections that providers have used previously for electronic data transfer and dispatch logging.
Tesla was the first company to go live with the new API, using the company’s automated real-time trading and control platform, Autobidder, to manage first-time BM access for the 7.5MW/15MWh Holes Bay project. FNV’s managing directorof engineering and asset management, Felipe Hernández, said, “Opening of the BM to new participants through the new API is an exciting moment for renewable and zero carbon flexibility technologies.” He also noted that “with the increasing market demand for flexibility services, continued progress on National Grid ESO reforms and technological improvements are the best way to allow the participation of new technologies in the BM and other flexibility services.”
Deployment Of Tesla Megapacks In Holes Bay
The video below, shared on YouTube by FRV, shows the Tesla Megapack batteries being deployed.
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