Siemens and Fluence to build giant battery energy storage system on Azores Island
Siemens Smart Infrastructure with Fluence was awarded a contract by the Portuguese energy provider EDA – Electricidade dos Açores to build a battery-based energy storage system on Terceira, the second biggest island in terms of electrical consumption of the Azores archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean. The project, with a power capacity of 15 megawatt (MW), the Gridstack system is scheduled for completion next year.
"The energy storage system we’re implementing will help Terceira Island transition to a new energy mix. The technology will enable an increased share of renewable energy, limiting the consumption of fossil fuels and significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions, said Fernando Silva, Director of Smart Infrastructure at Siemens Portugal.
Apart from increasing the share of RE in the mix, the project will also strengthen the island’s energy independence by providing more flexibility, capacity, resilience, and autonomy to its power grid.
According to the statement by Siemens, the BESS uses Fluence’s latest generation technology, which combines factory-built hardware, advanced software, and data-driven intelligence. The system will mainly regulate the frequency and voltage of the electrical grid, increase the security of supply providing spinning reserve, and absorb and store excess energy produced by renewable sources and feed it back into the grid during times of peak consumption or low production.
Further, implementing this BESS associated with a further expansion up to 6 MW of renewables is projected to double the island's share of renewables in the medium-term, from 20-30 percent to more than 60 percent, and by replacing a part of the diesel-based power supply with renewables it is estimated to reduce 1,150 tons in annual diesel consumption, and a decrease of CO2 emissions by more than 3,500 tons per year.
To enhance the system's efficiency, a sophisticated microgrid management system will be used which will allow real-time monitoring and control of the entire infrastructure as well as prediction of energy consumption, production, and usage of storage for several hours or even days based on weather forecasts.
“This enables us to set out an optimized operation strategy and reach an optimal balance between consumption and production of energy, and increase the security of supply for our customers,” said Duarte José Botelho da Ponte, Chairman of the Board of Directors of EDA – Electricidade dos Açores. “With the storage technology in combination with the microgrid application, we aim to maximize the integration of renewable energy sources on Terceira. At the same time, we would like to ensure power supply at the highest standards of quality and reliability.”