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SDG&E unveils 30MW lithium ion battery energy storage facility in US

EBR Staff Writer Published 27 February 2017

SDG&E, in partnership with AES Energy Storage, has unveiled a 30MW lithium-ion battery energy storage facility in California, US.

Located at Escondido in California, the energy storage facility is claimed to be the world's largest of its kind and is intended to enhance regional energy reliability while maximizing renewable energy use.

The facility is designed to store up to 120MWh of energy, equivalent of serving 20,000 customers for four hours.

SDG&E said in a statement: “The batteries will act like a sponge, soaking up and storing energy when it is abundant – when the sun is shining, the wind is blowing and energy use is low – and releasing it when energy resources are in high demand.

“This will provide reliable energy when customers need it most, and maximize the use of renewable resources such as solar and wind.”

The facility features about 400,000 batteries which are installed in nearly 20,000 modules and placed in 24 containers.

In 2016, SDG&E awarded a contract to AES Energy Storage to build two lithium ion battery energy storage arrays totaling 37.5MW.

As part of the contract, the firms developed the 30MW facility in Escondido, and a smaller 7.5MW array in El Cajon.

AES Energy Storage president John Zahurancik said:  "These two projects, including the world's largest advanced energy storage site, are the latest proof of energy storage's capacity to scale up and solve our most pressing grid issues in a short period."

The contract follows direction by the California Public Utility Commission (CPUC) to the Southern California utilities to develop additional energy storage options to enhance energy reliability.


Image: Officials from SDG&E and AES Energy Storage. Photo: courtesy of SDG&E.