Southern California Edison (SCE), the largest subsidiary of Edison International, has opened the 32 MWh Tehachapi Energy Storage project, which is the largest battery-based storage installation in North America.
The 32 MWh battery energy storage system features lithium-ion batteries housed inside a 6,300 square-foot facility at SCE’s Monolith substation in Tehachapi, California (USA). The project is strategically located in the Tehachapi Wind Resource Area that is projected to generate up to 4,500 MW of wind energy by 2016.
Dr. Imre Gyuk, energy storage program manager commented:
This installation will allow us to take a serious look at the technological capabilities of energy storage on the electric grid. It will also help us to gain a better understanding of the value and benefit of battery energy storage.
The total project investment is US$50 million. It is funded by SCE and federal stimulus money awarded by the Department of Energy as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The battery system supplied by LG Chem is comprised of 604 battery racks, 10,872 battery modules and 608,832 individual battery cells, the same lithium-ion cells installed in battery packs for General Motors’ Chevrolet Volt.
Over a two-year period, the project will demonstrate the performance of the lithium-ion batteries in actual system conditions and the capability to automate the operations of the battery energy storage system and integrate its use into the utility grid.
Doug Kim, director of Advanced Technology at SCE, stated:
The Tehachapi Energy Storage Project is a significant milestone for SCE and for energy storage in California. Grid-scale energy storage is an integral part of our company’s Storage Portfolio Development Framework that will contribute to optimizing grid performance and integrating more renewable energy resources.
Sung-Hoon Jang, vice president of the Energy Solution Company at LG Chem, added:
The successful commissioning of the Tehachapi Storage Project marks a key milestone for LG Chem in delivering large-scale energy storage solutions. The role of energy storage in the electric grid will continue to increase with the growth of renewable energy.