Wärtsilä announced that it received a contract to supply an engineered equipment delivery (EEQ) of a 40-MW / 80-MWh DC-coupled storage system to the 200-MW Hickory Park Solar project in Georgia, USA.
Project owner RWE Renewables said with the addition of the dispatchable storage solution, it will be able to sell nearly all of the 200 MW of generation from the solar PV to Georgia Power Company.
Wärtsilä’s GEMS Digital Energy Platform will control the hybrid plant. GEMS monitors, synchronizes, and optimizes generation assets at increments of 100 milliseconds, using machine learning and historic and real-time data analytics to calibrate the type of generation needed at any specific time, all under a single portfolio.
Wärtsilä’s auto-bidding solution “IntelliBidder” means that Hickory Park Solar will be able to provide Georgia Power a day-ahead firming solar plus storage profile, which will improve the predictability of the intermittent generation. Cloud-based IntelliBidder uses machine learning and algorithms based on automated and forecasted data, taking real-time trading and combining it with a smart control platform that provides value-based asset management and portfolio optimization.
Wärtsilä will provide its GridSolv Quantum energy storage system to the project. It is currently designed with CATL batteries. GridSolv Quantum is a modular system that enables the ESS, while maintaining a minimalist design. It also delivers the lowest lifecycle costs and the smallest system footprint, according to the company.
The co-located energy storage system will be DC-coupled with the solar system, allowing a number of benefits, such as improved system efficiency, lower balance of plant costs, and clipped solar recapture. With storage attached to the solar system, the batteries can be charged with excess solar generation when the PV reaches its peak and would otherwise begin clipping. The stored energy can be introduced into the grid at the appropriate time, maximizing the value of the system’s generation, said Wärtsiliä.
“For us, this is a milestone project of renewable integration involving solar PV plus energy storage, with the batteries being charged entirely from the solar system. It is one of the very few projects globally on this scale using DC-coupling,” commented Andy Tang, Vice President, Energy Storage and Optimisation, Wärtsilä Energy.
Delivery of the Wärtsilä equipment is scheduled for September 2021, and the plant is expected to commence commercial operations in November.