Utilities eye energy storage solutions

A 20 MW flywheel-battery system proposed for upstate New York is the latest effort to introduce large-scale energy storage into utility operations.

09/01/2008


A 20 MW flywheel-battery system proposed for upstate New York is the latest effort to introduce large-scale energy storage into utility operations. Developers see the systems as peak-shaving resources and as a means for helping manage intermittent renewable resources.

The proposed $50 million Stephentown, N.Y., project would incorporate an array of 200 flywheel batteries over several acres. The batteries' manufacturer, Beacon Power Corp., Tyngsboro, Mass., claims its equipment offers faster response than traditional peak-shaving generating plants, enabling rapid power-balancing capabilities for grid operators.

The project is awaiting final environmental approval from local authorities, and its application is pending with the New York Independent System Operator, which controls the state's electrical grid.

Utility giant AEP, Columbus, Ohio, is planning to install at least two 2 MW sodium-sulfur batteries in its transmission system by the end of this year, the first step in a plan to boost its energy-storage capabilities to 25 MW by the end of 2010, and 1,000 MW by 2020. The company sees the technology as a necessary addition to successful integration of wind-energy resources, which are most plentiful during low-demand nighttime periods.

Compressed-air energy storage (CAES) is seen as a possible resource for demand balancing and for evening out wind-farm generating capacity. The technology involves pumping air under pressure into underground storage facilities—including suitable natural geologic formations and retired salt mines—and releasing and heating it to drive a turbine generator. An Alabama CAES plant has operated since 1991, but interest has waned since that facility was commissioned. However, Iowa's municipal utilities banded together to propose the Iowa Stored Energy Project, scheduled to go online in 2013 as a load-balancing strategy. A prototype CAES design for use in wind-farm development is scheduled for completion in 2012, with manufacturer General Compression, Newton, Mass., now seeking potential sites in wind-rich Texas, California, or the Rocky Mountain states.





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2013 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
The true cost of lubrication: Three keys to consider when evaluating oils; Plant Engineering Lubrication Guide; 11 ways to protect bearing assets; Is lubrication part of your KPIs?
Contract maintenance: 5 ways to keep things humming while keeping an eye on costs; Pneumatic systems; Energy monitoring; The sixth 'S' is safety
Transport your data: Supply chain information critical to operational excellence; High-voltage faults; Portable cooling; Safety automation isn't automatic
Case Study Database

Case Study Database

Get more exposure for your case study by uploading it to the Plant Engineering case study database, where end-users can identify relevant solutions and explore what the experts are doing to effectively implement a variety of technology and productivity related projects.

These case studies provide examples of how knowledgeable solution providers have used technology, processes and people to create effective and successful implementations in real-world situations. Case studies can be completed by filling out a simple online form where you can outline the project title, abstract, and full story in 1500 words or less; upload photos, videos and a logo.

Click here to visit the Case Study Database and upload your case study.

Maintaining low data center PUE; Using eco mode in UPS systems; Commissioning electrical and power systems; Exploring dc power distribution alternatives
Synchronizing industrial Ethernet networks; Selecting protocol conversion gateways; Integrating HMIs with PLCs and PACs
Why manufacturers need to see energy in a different light: Current approaches to energy management yield quick savings, but leave plant managers searching for ways of improving on those early gains.

Annual Salary Survey

Participate in the 2013 Salary Survey

In a year when manufacturing continued to lead the economic rebound, it makes sense that plant manager bonuses rebounded. Plant Engineering’s annual Salary Survey shows both wages and bonuses rose in 2012 after a retreat the year before.

Average salary across all job titles for plant floor management rose 3.5% to $95,446, and bonus compensation jumped to $15,162, a 4.2% increase from the 2010 level and double the 2011 total, which showed a sharp drop in bonus.

2012 Salary Survey Analysis

2012 Salary Survey Results

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.