A Wind Power Microgrid for Off-grid Rural Russia and a Second Life for PEV Batteries

April 1, 2016
A wind power microgrid for rural Russia…David Crosby fundraises for microgrid…second life for EV batteries…Greensmith to install 100 MW of energy storage this year.
Wind power microgrid for rural far-east Russia

Mitsui & Co. is reporting that a pilot wind power microgrid project in an isolated Russian township began operations earlier this year. There are several hundred off-grid areas in Russia, many of them in harsh climates, which receive electricity from local power sources. The cost of fuel transportation has continued to mount for many years.

The wind power microgrid in Ust-Kamchatski has the potential to become a base for the introduction of wind power and microgrid systems across many of Russia’s isolated communities. Mitsui, Komaihaltec and Fuji Electric, in cooperation with Russian state-owned power company RAO Energy Systems of East (RAO ESE), will conduct a one-year demonstration there  to verify specifications for cold climate-resistant wind turbine generators, and to test the microgrid system to ensure smooth operation and interconnection between the wind power plant, existing diesel station and heat generation facilities.

The wind power microgrid project also aims to verify the system’s effect on power and heat balance in the community, and confirm the potential for widespread implementation of such technologies in remote areas, including those with harsh climate conditions.


David Crosby concert raises funds for Santa Barbara microgrid

Rock-and-roll Hall of Famer David Crosby performed a fundraiser concert to raise money for a microgrid project near Santa Barbara. The event was sponsored by the World Business Academy (WBA) to support their Safe Energy Project.

As reported by Edhat.com, the proposed microgrid would be powered by renewable sources such as solar and wind. It would ensure electric power in an area vulnerable to earthquakes, floods and fires that could take down the main power grid lines.


A second life for plug-in electric vehicle batteries in stationary energy storage applications 

What happens to capable plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) lithium-ion batteries once they’ve exhausted their vehicle life? It’s not over yet, according to a new report from Navigant Research; they could be reused in stationary energy storage system applications (ESS).

Many traction batteries with Li-ion chemistries used in PEVs are showing less degradation and better performance than initially expected, sparking the interest of stationary ESS stakeholders. The used-but-capable PEV Li-ion batteries are likely to be sold at a low price, but can still provide a useful function. They could solve the problem of new batteries being too expensive in the mid-term, said the report.

“Now that we’ve entered into the modern era of mainstream vehicle electrification, today’s question is what will happen to PEV Li-ion that have exhausted their vehicle life, but still have capable batteries?” says William Tokash, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “The potential reuse of these batteries is of keen interest to both stationary ESS developers looking to reduce costs and automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) interested in new revenue models that capitalize on the residual asset value.”

An executive summary of the report, Alternative Revenue Models for Advanced Batteries, is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.


Greensmith Energy on track to install more than 100 MW of energy storage in 2016

Greensmith Energy, one of the largest providers of energy storage software, announced 70 MW of energy storage deployments – all powered by the company’s GEMS software platform. While most of the capacity was integrated and installed by the company over the past two years, Greensmith is also reporting growth in software licensing as punctuated by the 53 MWh software-as-a-service contract awarded earlier this year by Deltro Energy.

Greensmith is on track to install more than 100 MW of energy storage in 2016, after announcing an $18.3 million round of growth funding led by American Electric Power and E.ON. Advanced. It has concentrated on developing an advanced energy storage platform and the software necessary to solve large, complex grid applications for energy storage.

Grid-scale systems delivered to large power producers and utilities drove most of the company’s cumulative total; however, Greensmith notes increased microgrid and behind-the-meter business in locations such as Puerto Rico and San Diego where the company deployed solar-integrated systems in 2015.

Its GEMS software platform now offers seven different stackable application modules for energy storage including frequency regulation and response, microgrid, solar integration with ramp rate control and grid reliability/deferral. The GEMS platform has also successfully integrated 14 different batteries and 10 power conversion systems, allowing customers to take advantage of leading-edge components specified for each deployment.

For more on wind power microgrids and energy storage systems, follow @MicrogridNews.

About the Author

Cara Goman

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