Page 58 - European Energy Innovation - Winter 2016 publication
P. 58

58  Winter 2016 European Energy Innovation


A successful energy transition can only
work with flexibility

By Thomas Speidel (pictured), CEO of ads-tec GmbH and President of the German Energy Storage
                                             Association (BVES)

Apermanent balance                        We need the grid – there is no doubt         storage systems installed in German
               between generation         about it - but grids can only do one         households. With around 1,6 million
               and demand is the          thing. They are only able to take            PV systems on German roofs, the
               precondition for a stable  energy from one place to another.            retrofit potential is enormous and
and reliable electricity grid. In the     They are a one-trick pony.                   by 2020 the number of residential
past, the energy system consisting of                                                  batteries is expected to grow to about
the three parts generation, transport     In 2015, the cost for redispatch in          170,000. The constant growth of self-
and consumption was acting in a very      Germany came into the range of               consumption “behind-the-meter” sets
predictable way. The fast roll-out of     one billion Euro already – and this          new challenges for the grid operators,
renewable energy sources in a more        especially, because the grid isn´t apt       because not all systems act in a grid-
and more de-centralized system sets       to bring the electricity to where it is      supportive manner. Furthermore it
some significant new challenges for       needed.                                      implies a continuous and serious loss
the system.                                                                            in clients which is a big challenge for
                                          Energy storage can act like a                many local utility companies.
A lot of discussions in the last couple   „Swiss armyknife“ that unfolds its
years were always about whether we        different tools depending on the             To tackle this problem, mixed models
need either storage or the grid to        specific application and particular          are in the current center of attention,
facilitate the renewable infeed. The      requirements. All energy storage             e.g. in swarms or quarter storage
answer is, that for a successful and      technologies offer different services        projects. Besides the optimization of
widely accepted energy transition we      and are the perfect enabler for              self-consumption, other applications
will need both.                           flexibility in every scenario – also cross-  are e.g. the provision of control energy
                                          sectoral.                                    or arbitrage businesses. Taking part in
                                                                                       several market segments allows higher
                                          Pumped hydro storage has been                returns and thus a faster amortization.
                                          integrated successfully in the energy        In a quarter storage concept,
                                          system for many decades and has              households do not even have to invest
                                          proven its relevance for system              in their own battery system, because
                                          stability.                                   they only lease their required capacity
                                                                                       in the centrally located storage unit.
                                          Battery Storage Systems (BSS) are in
                                          the current center of attention, because     But also the grid operator profits
                                          they can combine many business               of those models by getting the
                                          models. They react within milliseconds       opportunity to control and monitor
                                          and serve in many applications.              the system. Additionally he can benefit
                                          They are excellent for the provision         from grid supporting services provided
                                          of control energy in large scale             by the storage system/s. Furthermore,
                                          applications, but also and especially in     also the regional utility company
                                          residential areas for the optimization       benefits from such models that bring
                                          of self-consumption. Through the             new business cases and economic
                                          combination of photovoltaic (PV)             value. Another very worthwhile fact
                                          and a battery storage system also            to mention in this context is electro-
                                          households move their “private energy        mobility as bidirectional charging
                                          transition” forwards and become more         (grid-to-vehicle or vehicle-to-grid)
                                          independent from the rising electricity      brings another valuable effect for grid
                                          price at the same time.                      flexibility. In Germany, the ambitious
                                                                                       aim is to pass the threshold of 1 million
                                          Currently there are around 45,000            electric vehicles in operation by 2020.

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