For a subject that many have dismissed as too far into the future or not yet commercially viable, it seems there’s been a sudden change of heart.

Of all the demand-side-response related topics we covered at the recent Energy Live Expo, our Battery Storage: Myths and Truths presentation attracted the largest crowd.

Energy and DSR expert Dan Connor took participants on a whistle-stop tour of all you need to know if you are interested in – or considering – battery storage as part of your overall energy management strategy.

Judging from the feedback afterwards, he certainly got participants thinking.

 

Why any flexible asset can be used as a battery

For example, did you know that a cold storage system could be classified as a battery?

You can ‘charge’ it up by using extra power to reduce temperatures, then ‘discharge’ that stored energy at peak times by turning down your supply and letting your cold store warm up to your maximum permitted temperature.

Despite drawing the same grid consumption, reducing import power at peak times will deliver significant savings on peak import costs –– so reducing your overall energy bill.

 

Necessity drives battery market

The reason battery storage is getting so much attention is necessity. As coal-fired power stations go off line, so we lose that inertia that allowed us to balance the energy system.

The growth in renewable generation is also increasing the need for greater flexibility in the grid.

So finding new ways to balance energy supply and demand is crucial, especially as traditional methods of energy storage – i.e. hydro power stations – are already at capacity for the UK’s topography.

 

Understanding the technical details

Before you consider investing in battery storage, however, it’s worth increasing your understanding of how batteries work.

For example, the difference between the cells (which store energy) and the invertors (which allow you to access that energy). Also, how the relationship between the two gives you a battery’s C-rating, and what this means to your business.

Understanding the different ways you can use battery storage is also key – from load shifting to cost avoidance, revenue generation to directly-connected utility scale applications.

Any investment should also be supported by a clear view of return on investment. So it’s important to understand the value that each battery solution can potentially deliver – not only now but in five and ten years time.

 

Why taking a long-term view is key

Having a view of revenue streams over the longer term is especially key, as batteries are a 10-to-15 year investment, and the market is evolving so rapidly that what applies today is set to change in the years to come.

For example, the growth in electric vehicles means the requirement for electricity capacity is set to increase dramatically, so businesses need to consider how they might accommodate this.

 

Become risk aware to protect revenue streams

Understanding risk is also important. For example, the future impact of industry changes such as policy modifications and Ofgem’s current Targeted Charging Review.

Increasing your knowledge of operational and market risks is also important – and why revenue diversification is key for risk mitigation.

If you need any help or support in these areas – or around battery storage or DSR opportunities in general – do get in touch with any member of our Energy HQ team by emailing your details to EnergyHQ@npower.com. Or speak to your Client Lead if you’re already a customer.

 

{{ alt }}

Could DSR save the world?

With recent news that global levels of CO2 have reached record highs, the role of DSR as a tool to cut emissions has been getting more attention.

Read more
{{ alt }}

DSR: Make an informed decision when it comes to risk

Whether you know it as load shifting, smart grids, virtual power plants or supplier balancing, DSR has a key role to play in today’s energy market.

Read more

Ask the experts

Contact a member of our DSR team for an assessment of your business's DSR potential

Find out More