World's largest flow battery to offer grid-scale energy storage in China
Image credit: DICP
The world's largest flow battery energy storage station has been connected to the grid in Dalian, China, with the intention of reducing the pressure on the power supply during peak energy usage periods.
Energy storage technology can help power systems more easily respond to strain during large-scale drains on the power grid as well as potentially lowering the carbon footprint of an energy network by charging during off-peak times and releasing the energy back to the grid when needed.
It could also support increased use of renewable energy, which is key to helping China achieve its carbon peak and carbon neutrality goals which are currently set for 2030 and 2060 respectively.
A flow battery is one in which two liquids are separated by a membrane and circulated in order to enable ion exchange between them. They typically offer a long cycle life and are suited for consistent energy delivery which is required for grid-level storage solutions.
The 100MW battery was finally connected to the grid in Dalian today, with plans to put it into operation in mid-October.
It was approved by the Chinese National Energy Administration in April 2016 as the country’s first national, large-scale chemical energy storage demonstration project.
Researchers from the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) said that based on China’s average daily life electricity consumption of 2kWh per capita, the power station can meet the electricity demand of 200,000 residents.
It will serve as the city’s “power bank” and play the role of “peak cutting and valley filling” across the power system with particular focus on making the most of renewable energy facilities such as wind and solar energy in the Dalian area.
These renewable energy sources will be used to charge the station’s batteries during the grid load valley period. Later, at peak grid load, the stored chemical energy will be converted back into electrical energy and transmitted to users.
Additionally, this technology can work with conventional thermal power, nuclear power, and other power sources to smooth out peaks and troughs on the grid.
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