Sumitomo Group Commissions Large-Scale Battery Storage System in PJM

In addition to microgrid deployments, advanced battery energy storage systems are also increasingly being used by utilities and independent system operators (ISOs) responsible for managing state and regional power grids.

The Sumitomo Group’s Wiley Battery Utility LLC on January 13 announced it is ready to commission an innovative, utility-scale battery storage system in Hamilton County, Ohio. With a maximum power output of 6 MW and energy capacity of 2 MWh, the Wiley battery storage facility will help ISO PJM balance grid supply and demand throughout its regional service territory.

Sumitomo Group has been building wind and solar power plants in the U.S., but this marks the first to incorporate energy storage.  The group plans to build on the momentum as energy storage costs decline, performance improves, and regulatory low- or zero emissions power market reform proceeds across the nation.

Energy storage: Indispensable to Increase Renewable Energy Penetration

“As a developer of wind and solar power plants which are unavoidably intermittent generation sources, we think it is quite important that we also contribute to the stabilization of power grids through balancing services,¨ Nick Hagiwara, director of Sumitom Corporation of Americas’ Power and Infrastructure Group, was quoted in a press release.

¨Understanding that energy storage service is indispensable for further penetration of renewable energy, we will keep trying to expand our footprint in the energy-storage space, not only in frequency-regulation but also in other types of storage services,” he added.

Though the Wiley Battery Utility is its first in the U.S., Sumitomo has been developing and deploying advanced stationary battery storage systems in its home country, Japan. These include installations on Yumeshima – a reclaimed island in Osaka Bay – and the Koshiki islands offshore the coast of Kagoshima prefecture in southern Japan.

Sumitomo has partnered with auto manufacturer Nissan Corp. to build and manage an innovative integrated solar-stationary energy storage system by reusing electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

Growing Use of Grid-Scale Battery Storage

Sumitomo acquired its interest in the Wiley Battery Utility from RES Americas through Perennial Power Holdings, one of its U.S.-based subsidiaries. Perennial owns the Wiley facility, which was manufactured by Toshiba Corp.

Large-scale advanced battery storage systems such as Wiley Battery Utility’s provide regulated power to the frequency regulation market by following instructions PJM sends every two seconds.

Historically, such ancillary grid services have been provided using thermal and hydraulic power generation. Regulators, utilities and proponents increasingly view advanced battery systems as offering an emissions-free alternative that is more efficient, effective and costs less, however.

PJM is the ISO responsible for managing grid generation, distribution and transmission across 13 northeastern U.S. states. PJM’s total electric power generation capacity of some 185,600 MW rivals that for Japan as a whole which, excluding nuclear, totals around 230,000 MW, Sumitomo notes.

Sumitomo began construction on site in Hamilton County, Ohio in April. Toshiba will be responsible for maintaining the Wiley battery power storage system.

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