The one thing keeping renewable energy from becoming more widespread is storage – more specifically, how to store energy gained from renewable resources so it can be allocated as needed to meet demand for a grid.
One energy producer in North America is working to develop a hybrid storage system that can integrate renewable energy into the company’s infrastructure.
The producer is developing what it calls a hybrid ultracapacitor-battery energy storage system (HESS) at a substation in North Carolina. HESS is designed to solve a unique problem with energy generation: preventing degradation and extending operational life when it comes to rapid-response load shifting.
Currently, for time-shifting applications for a power provider, stand-alone battery systems are sufficient. However, when batteries have to provide high-power response over a short period of time, this load can result in degradation.
To solve this, HESS uses ultracapacitors (UCAPs) that can store and discharge gathered energy effectively and quickly in real time. The result is lower thermal stress and minimized degradation.
Developing Renewable Energy
The HESS project is an example of how energy providers are turning to renewable energy technology to supplement conventional means.
One advantage of biomass as opposed to other sources, such as solar, is the ability to ramp up as needed to meet high-capacity, short-term response to demand. A provider gains the benefits of using renewable energy – i.e. lower emissions and environmentally-friendly impact – while keeping the benefits of conventional energy, namely the ability to ramp up and down as needed at all times of the day.
It is possible that HESS can also provide benefits for biomass, including co-firing plants that utilize a mix of coal and biomass in their boilers.
ProcessBarron works in the biomass industry to provide innovative engineering solutions to plants considering adopting this versatile form of renewable energy for their production channels. Learn more about ProcessBarron’s capabilities today.