Large-scale battery storage will be the key to developing an efficient renewable energy generation system.
Large energy storage is needed to help to maintain grid stability as the country moves to higher levels of renewable penetration, enabling us to reach our 2030 target of 70% renewable electricity.
While storage units may still be in its infancy around the world, Norwegian-based Statkraft has completed the construction of its second large-scale battery project in Ireland.
Statkraft entered a contract with EirGrid to develop the Kelwin-2 26MW battery project in Tarbert in Co Kerry.
The main purpose of the battery is not to store bulk wind generation but to respond instantly to the electrical frequency fluctuations that result from increasing amounts of intermittent power generation. The unit will provide reserves to the national electricity grid in the event of a sudden drop-off in supply.
Similar to Statkraft’s 11MW Kilathmoy project which began operating in April 2020, Kelwin-2 is also a hybrid site where the battery shares a grid connection with a wind farm.
Commenting on the project, managing director of Statkraft Ireland Kevin O’Donovan said: “We are delighted to have completed construction of our second battery project just one year after we energised Kilathmoy, the first large-scale battery built in Ireland”.
“During three grid capacity alerts in January, our battery at Kilathmoy stepped up to the plate and was able to generate active power in critical periods to support the grid,” he continued.
“On numerous occasions over the past year, the unit has also responded to short-term frequency drops to inject electricity into the national grid in a fraction of one second. Irish batteries are providing the fastest active power reserves responses anywhere in the world today.”