UK National Grid awards eight battery storage contracts

Eight huge battery systems will be used to help balance energy supply and demand on the UK’s power grid and ensure that energy keeps flowing to where it is needed.

The National Grid awarded eight companies sub-second frequency response contracts which will provide combined capacity Of 200 megawatts (Mw).

Frequency response costs the operator between £160 to £170 million a year. The National Grid expects the new contracts to save £200 million over four years.

Wind turbines

“Frequency response is something we’ve always had and enhanced frequency-response is a faster version of it,” Cathy McCay, head of commercial operations at National Grid, told Bloomberg. “As we get more renewables on the system, this flexibility is going to be incredibly important.”

EDF Energy, Vattenfall, Low Carbon, RES, Element Power, E.On UK and Belectric were among the companies awarded contracts.

Cordi O’Hara, Director of UK System Operator, National Grid said in a statement: ‘We are constantly looking to the future to understand how we can make the most of the energy available to us. This project is at the very core of our Power Responsive work, to balance the Grid by the most efficient means possible, saving money and energy.

‘These awards show that we can work with industry to bring forward new technology and I believe storage has much to contribute to the flexible energy system of tomorrow. This is the beginning of an exciting new chapter for the industry.’

Batteries will help power grid cope with renewable energy.

According to The Financial Times: “Battery storage is often seen as the holy grail for wind and solar generators because it allows them to store the electricity they produce intermittently and act more like a conventional coal or gas power plant.”