Battery storage is a technology that enables power system operators and utilities to store energy for later use. A Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) is an electrochemical device that charges from the grid, power plant or renewable sources, and then discharges that energy at a later time to provide electricity, or other grid services, when needed. There are several different types of battery available, however the current market for battery storage, both in the UK and globally, is dominated by lithium-ion batteries, similar to those used in mobile phones and electric vehicles.
This is effectively known as ‘time shifting’ to use cheaper tariffs, for example at night-time, to charge the battery, and then use the stored electricity when the cost would be higher during peak times.
The ability to store excess electricity generated from renewable sources, like solar or wind, to use when required at a later time. Electricity generated when the sun shines or when the wind blows is not necessarily needed at that specific time and would be lost if not stored for future use.
Having electricity stored in a battery is of huge benefit if the power goes off, so that this can be used as a back up to keep the lights on and equipment running until the power supply is restored (subject to the capacity of the battery and the level of charge when the power supply was interrupted).
In the video below, Chris Taylor and Stewart Williams provide a high level introduction into batteries, their potential benefits to our clients, how this technology is helping accelerate decarbonisation, as well as giving us a sneak peek into Vital’s future battery plans.