Ohio based utility American Electric Power is to expand its use of large-scale battery technology on its electricity grid.
Ohio based utility American Electric Power is to expand its use of large-scale battery technology on its electricity grid as part of its wider plans to integrate new technologies for reliability, renewable energy and energy efficiency in its service area.
The company will install 6 MW of stationary sodium sulphur battery technology in its 11-state service territory over the next two years. It will initially install units in West Virginia and Ohio next year, and will work with wind developers to identify a third location for battery technology deployment.
The utility says the installations will boost reliability and help to integrate wind generation, and are a step towards AEP’s goal of 1000 MW of advanced storage. The company is currently the only US utility currently using advanced energy storage technology as part of its electricity infrastructure.
AEP has placed an order for three new NAS batteries with NGK Insulators Ltd. of Japan, which manufactures and co-develops the technology along with Tokyo Electric Power Co. It anticipates delivery in early 2008.
“We are extremely impressed with both the performance and the potential of this technology after using it in real-world applications and from experience we’ve gained through our long relationship with NGK,” said Michael G. Morris, AEP´s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “These new installations will move us a step closer to the full potential of advanced energy storage technologies in areas like reliability improvement, peak-load shaving and the use of stored energy from renewable sources like wind to supplement available generation resources.”
The combined cost for the three installations, including site preparation, equipment and control systems, will be approximately $27 million
AEP is aiming to have at least 25 MW of NAS battery capacity in place by the end of this decade. Its longer-term goal is to add another 1000 MW of advanced storage technology to its system by 2020. The company says it will look at a wide spectrum of technologies, including flow batteries, pumped hydro, plug-in hybrid vehicles and various other technologies to determine their feasibility and potential for commercial application.