Grid Scale, Storage

Trend Toward Energy Storage for Frequency Regulation in UK Will Continue, IHS Says

U.K. utility National Grid is turning to energy storage for frequency regulation — a trend that IHS says “will continue in the coming years.”

Energy company RES said on May 24 that it has signed a four-year contract with National Grid to build energy storage that will provide a dynamic frequency response service in sub-second timescales.

“After several years of rapid price reduction, large-scale batteries are increasingly being considered an attractive alternative to conventional thermal generators that provide electricity grid balancing services — in particular, frequency regulation,” IHS Senior Research Manager Sam Wilkinson said in a research note.

According to Wilkinson, the average lithium ion (Li-ion) battery price has fallen by over 60 percent in the last four years, largely because of growing competition in the stationary and automotive battery sector.

“Because of their extremely fast response, high efficiency and long-life, Li-ion batteries have quickly established themselves as the leading battery technology for these types of applications,” he said. “To date the majority of such systems have been developed in the United States, Germany, South Korea and Japan. Aided by the National Grid’s upcoming tender for 200 MW of ‘enhanced frequency response,’ and with quickly rising demand for batteries to store surplus solar power in homes, IHS expects nearly 1 GW of batteries will be installed in the United Kingdom’s grid by 2020.”

RES said that it expects to place the energy storage project in service within 18 months.

Lead image credit: RES