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500 BMW i3 batteries connected to UK wind farm

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Swedish power company Vattenfall announced this week it has successfully connected 500 BMW i3 batteries to the 228 MW Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm in South Wales, providing 22 MW of energy storage in what the company believes is the UK’s largest co-located onshore wind and battery storage project.

The original idea, called ‘Battery&PyC’, was proposed by Vattenfall and approved by National Grid back in August of 2016 as one of eight projects selected to provide Enhanced Frequency Response (EFR) services to the national grid network.

More specifically, as Vattenfall noted last week, the six shipping containers filled with 500 newBMW i3 batteries will help National Grid – the UK’s national electricity grid manager – maintain electricity frequency levels and reliability of electricity supply.

“Vattenfall is on the road to a smart, digitalised future, free from fossil fuels within just one generation,” explained Gunnar Groebler, Vattenfall’s Head of Business Area Wind. “I can think of few other energy installations that better demonstrates what that future looks like than [email protected]

The batteries were supplied by BMW as part of a larger supply agreement signed between the two companies back in March of 2017, in which Vattenfall signed a contract for the delivery of up to 1,000 lithium-ion, i3 batteries with a capacity of 33 kilowatt-hours (kWh) each, and which come equipped with a BMW-owned battery management system.

The first lot of batteries went towards the 122 MW onshore wind farm Princess Alexia in the Netherlands, which will provide 3.2 MW of energy storage.

“We are pleased that we have found a supplier in BMW, who meets our high safety requirements with the use of the batteries with reliably good quality from German series production,” Daniel Hustadt, project manager for large batteries at Vattenfall Innovation GmbH, explained last year.

The 228 MW Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm was completed and commissioned towards the end of 2017, and provides the equivalent electricity needed to power 188,000 local homes, or over 15% of the households in Wales every year.

The project also displaces an average of over 300,000 tonnes of CO2 from fossil fuel generation each year.

“This is Vattenfall’s largest battery installation to date, where we make use of synergies at our existing wind farms sites – such as at Pen y Cymoedd or the Princess Alexia Wind Farm in the Netherlands,” added Claus Wattendrup, Head of Business Unit Solar & Batteries. “Hybrid renewable parks will play a larger role in the future and we are leading this development.”

   

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  • George Darroch

    Is this a sign that the i3 isn’t selling as well as hoped? Or is BMW getting into the battery business…

    • Andrew Roydhouse

      Possibly economies of scale coming into it as well.

  • Søren Hansen

    22MW – or 22MWh? 500 x 33kWh = 16.5MWh. Article seems to mix energy (MWh) and power (MW).