PG&E unveils battery energy storage project in San Jose


Greg Kiraly, Senior
VP Distribution
Operations, PG&E
San Jose, CA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — May 27, 2013 – Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has launched an innovative battery energy storage system pilot project in San Jose, CA, with support from the California Energy Commission.
The Yerba Buena battery energy storage system charges batteries when demand is low and then sends reserved power to the grid when demand grows. The system has the potential to provide important services for balancing energy supply and demand, helping to support greater integration of intermittent renewable generation, as well as improving power quality and reliability for customers.

“Battery storage holds tremendous promise in helping electric utilities like PG&E enhance the overall reliability of an ever changing energy supply,” said Greg Kiraly, PG&E’s senior vice president of distribution operations. “This pilot project will provide critical real world data on the technical and financial performance of battery energy storage to help us understand how battery storage devices can serve PG&E’s customers and the overall electric grid.”

The project is using a utility scale sodium-sulfur (NaS) battery energy storage with a capacity of 4 MW that can store more than six hours of energy.

PG&E is working in close coordination with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) to study how sodium-sulfur battery energy storage can improve power quality and reliability, support greater integration of intermittent renewable power, and supply energy to California’s electricity market.
S&C Electric Company is the engineering, procurement and construction contractor for the project and supplied the storage management system and power conversion equipment that control the battery’s AC input/output and its interface with the electric grid. NGK Insulators is the manufacturer of the sodium-sulfur battery system which includes the battery modules and control system for managing DC input/output and other parameters for maximizing module longevity.

The Energy Commission provided a $3.3 million grant to PG&E towards the installation and evaluation of the system.