Toshiba and NRG Energy have deployed an energy storage system in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas region.
The Elbow Creek Energy Storage project uses a 2 MW lithium-ion Toshiba battery system and is located near NRG’s Elbow Creek Wind Farm in Howard County.
- The storage system is designed to help correct short-term grid imbalances by providing high-speed frequency regulation services and to shift load from hours when wind generation is high to hours when load support is needed.
In energy circles, Texas is almost as well known for its wind power as it is for its oil. That makes ERCOT a good place for an energy storage project.
One of the more notable projects was Duke Energy’s 2012 Notrees storage project that was designed to store electricity from an adjacent wind plant. Two years ago, Duke said it would expand the facility to 36 MW.
In February, E.On said it is installing nearly 20 MW of energy storage at two of its wind farms in west Texas. The lithium-ion battery arrays are due online by year end 2017.
NRG’s project is smaller, but also is designed to integrate wind power into ERCOT’s grid. The company says it is expected to demonstrate the environmentally beneficial impact and commercial viability of siting energy storage technology amidst the growing hub of renewable generation in West Texas.
“We believe energy storage is a fast growing opportunity that will have an increasingly important role in the energy grid of the future,” John Chillemi, executive vice president of development at NRG Energy, said in a statement. “NRG will continue to seek more opportunities like it in Texas and other markets in the U.S.”
Meanwhile, a pending case at the Public Utilities Commission of Texas seeks to define storage's role within the state's competitive market.