Major battery energy storage system goes live in Kent

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Pivot Power, Wärtsilä and EDF have activated a 50MW/50MWh battery energy storage system at Pivot Power’s Kemsley site in Kent to help support the UK’s transition to a decarbonised electricity system.

The 50MW lithium-ion battery energy storage system is directly connected to National Grid’s high-voltage transmission network at the Kemsley substation and will provide essential flexibility to support the integration of more renewables and future-proof the UK’s electricity system.

Wärtsilä has supplied its advanced battery energy storage technology for the project coupled with its GEMS digital energy platform, which leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to enable the intelligent management of energy systems.

EDF’s Powershift product will provide the route to market services for Pivot Power to maximise revenues from the battery across ancillary services (including dynamic containment and reactive power), wholesale optimisation and balancing mechanism.

The Kemsley battery storage system is the second to go live as part of Pivot Power’s plans to deploy up to 40 similar sites throughout the UK, providing up to 2GW of flexible capacity. It supports EDF Renewables’ plans to develop an additional 10GW of battery storage globally by 2035.

The Kemsley battery storage system is the second to go live as part of Pivot Power’s plans to deploy up to 40 similar sites throughout the UK, providing up to 2GW of flexible capacity

Matt Allen, CEO of Pivot Power, said: “The expansion of our battery storage portfolio is an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to future-proofing the UK’s energy system and accelerating a net zero future. Through this collaboration with Wärtsilä and EDF we are creating more of the low carbon infrastructure needed to manage the integration of renewables into the grid and power our lives with clean energy.”

Pivot Power’s first system, in Cowley, Oxford, went live in June 2021, and forms part of Energy Superhub Oxford – a project designed to showcase rapid EV charging, battery storage, low carbon heating and smart energy management technologies.

Pivot Power is replicating the Energy Superhub model, combining grid-scale batteries with high-volume power infrastructure for EV charging, at its next two sites in Coventry and Sandwell in the West Midlands. The company has partnered with Wärtsilä to develop two new grid-scale battery storage systems, which will collectively provide 100MW/200MWh of storage capacity.

According to Pivot Power, for the UK to be on track to deliver its net zero commitments, up to 13GW of new electricity storage needs to be built by 2030, while a smarter, more flexible system could save up to £10bn a year by 2050.

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