Energy storage company redT energy, in partnership with Centrica, has installed and connected its 1MWh energy storage system in the UK.
redT's machines located at The Olde House, a 600 Acre working farm and holiday retreat, situated in North Cornwall, will be used as a 'flexible platform' enabling the customer to generate strong commercial returns and utilise significantly more of its renewable solar onsite generation. redT expects this type of project to achieve an IRR % in the mid-teens. The energy storage machine has a 25+ year asset life, thus proving the strong investment case for redT's patented vanadium redox flow machines.
This is the largest operating containerised vanadium redox flow machine system in the UK and the first commercial energy storage system to sign up to Centrica's Local Energy Market ("LEM") trial. The LEM is a £19m project designed to demonstrate the role that flexible generation and storage can play in relieving pressure on the grid and driving down energy prices in the UK.
redT's machines will initially be used to create "firm solar" power by timeshifting excess solar generation produced during the day for use during peak times when electricity from the grid is most expensive. This operation could save The Olde House up to 50% on grid imports during peak times. It will also create revenue by tracking and dynamically responding to changes in grid frequency and providing grid services such as; Short Term Operating Reserve (STOR), participation in the Capacity Market and Demand Turn Up.
Following a rigorous testing programme the units have been G59 certified and control of the system is expected to be assumed by Centrica in due course, who will operate the asset remotely, engaging in energy trading and arbitrage activities on behalf of the customer, generating revenue for the site in the process.
The potential addressable market for behind the meter industrial and commercial (I&C) energy storage in the UK is in the range of 3,000 GWh total (calculated using 2016 Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES) data). Making a conservative assumption of 20% take up across all I&C sites in the UK, this equates to 8 million redT tank units.
Scott McGregor, CEO, redT energy commented: "We are delighted to announce that our flagship energy storage project in the UK is now fully operational. This remains one of the only commercial energy storage projects of its kind in the UK as a fully flexible energy storage platform, demonstrating the Company's industry leading position in the sector. Through 'firming' onsite solar generation, this system will generate significant savings for The Olde House, by enabling the owners to greatly reduce the need to import electricity from the grid. The machines will also engage revenue producing grid services and energy trading opportunities with the help of Centrica and the LEM.
"We are very fortunate to be working with Centrica and The Olde House on this flagship UK energy project, which proves flow machines as a commercially attractive, viable solution and flexible platform for the UK's energy future."
Matt Hastings, Programme Director of the Cornwall Local Energy Market trial at Centrica commented: "We're really proud to be working with redT and to be helping The Olde House to make the most of their solar generation.
"Energy storage will play a fundamental part in the programme, providing the local network operator with a tool to help stabilise the system, relieving constrained parts of the network, and giving homes and businesses the ability to store their own energy."