|[February 23, 2012]
APS Testing Energy Storage in Flagstaff
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. --(Business Wire)--
Arizona Public Service Company began testing a new 1.5 megawatt-hour
energy storage system that is the size of a shipping container and can
generate the equivalent power output of 1,200 hybrid cars or 300,000
cell phone batteries.
The goal of the company's two-year pilot in Flagstaff, Ariz., will be to
determine the benefits for storing electricity and putting it onto the
grid at times when APS customers need it most.
"We plan to study a number of things, including how we can decrease
equipment stress on high demand days and how we can provide solar energy
to our customers after sundown," says APS Director of Energy Innovation
Barbara Lockwood. "This pilot has great potential to change some of the
ways we deliver electricity in the future."
The energy storage pilot will be two-fold. In 2012, the energy storage
system, which was developed by Electrovaya
Inc., a lithium-ion battery manufacturing company, will reside in an
electrical distribution substation. At a later date, the system will be
trucked a few miles up the road to support a neighborhood-scale solar
In the substation, the system will store energy when it is inexpensive
and the electricity flowing through the substation equipment is at lower
capacity. Then, APS will have the ability
to dispatch the energy at times of higher demand when electricity is
both more expensive to purchase or produce and equipment is at maximum
"The steadier flow of electricity on peak days could keep our equipment
healthy for longer periods, so we can improve reliability and keep
maintenance costs down," says APS Energy Storage Project Manager Joe
Wilhelm. "In the future, if a piece of equipment fails and causes an
outage, we could also dispatch energy from storage units temporarily
until repairs were made."
At the Doney Park Renewable Energy site, a 500-kilowatt solar power
plant, the energy storage system will help reduce
the intermittency of solar power generation and help to get more
renewable energy onto the grid. For example, when a cloud passes over
and system output decreases slightly, APS can dispatch energy from the
storage system to fill the gap and keep a smooth flow of generation to
the grid. APS also plans to test dispatching the energy after dark.
"Energy storage can make renewable resources more reliable for our
operations teams and for our customers. One of the busiest times on our
system is between 5 and 9 p.m. That's when many customers get home from
work, turn on the lights, the TV and the air conditioner. However, by
that time, solar systems have largely stopped producing for the day,"
says Wilhelm. "With storage, we can gather solar energy during the day
and dispatch it in the evening, when it provides the greatest benefit to
The 500-kW Doney Park Renewable Energy site is part of the APS
Community Power Project. With Community Power, APS is studying the
effects of a high
concentration of solar energy in a single neighborhood as part of a
$3.3 million U.S. Department of Energy grant awarded in 2010. In
addition to the solar plant, 125 APS customers and a local elementary
school are generating electricity from rooftop solar systems.
Flagstaff is home to a number of APS Energy Innovation pilots. In
addition to Community Power, APS is engaged in a self-healing/self-isolating
grid pilot and a distribution fault anticipation pilot. The latter
two technologies help predict and manage system faults, resulting in
reduced power outages and quicker repair times. Together, these and
Energy Innovation programs are ranked Top 5 nationally by Intelligent
about the energy storage system can be found at the APS
You Tube channel. Photos
of the system are also available online.
Arizona's largest and longest-serving electricity utility, serves more
than 1.1 million customers in 11 of the state's 15 counties. With
headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the principal subsidiary of Pinnacle
West Capital Corp. (NYSE: PNW).
Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=50179280&lang=en
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