ROUNDUP: WA utility picks ‘secure’ software, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ Japan demo, New CEO at Eos

W Australia state-owned utility gets ‘Secure’ on software to integrate solar, batteries

31 July 2019: A software-based switching solution provided to homeowners in Western Australia by utility Horizon Power will mitigate the impact of “limited solar hosting capacity” on the local grid, the company has said.

Software provider SwitchDin’s energy management solutions include ‘Secure Gateway Devices’, controllers that ensure customer-owned devices including solar PV panels and batteries “can be smoothly and securely integrated into the local grid’s operation,” SwitchDin CEO Dr Andrew Mears, said.

SwitchDin’s SGD will provide feed-in management, demand management and battery management capability for individual sites. It will provide Horizon Power with the ability to orchestrate these resources to maximise system-wide efficiency.

It means residential solar-plus-storage can be integrated into virtual power plant networks. Horizon Power is state government-owned and is seeking to overcome the “well recognised challenge” of “limited solar hosting capacity”. A Western Australia government taskforce was set to meet yesterday for a workshop to discuss a Distributed Energy Resources Roadmap for the state. 

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Delta Electronics combine gas, PV, batteries for Japan hybrid demonstrator

31 July 2019: A demonstration power plant at a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries-owned manufacturing facility in Japan will be equipped with lithium-ion battery storage for enabling “low-cost, environmentally friendly” distributed energy.

Delta Electronics has delivered the energy storage system, which includes a lithium-ion battery with a 4C charge rate. This makes it a potential direct source of power for electric vehicles (EVs) to charge as well.

Delta supplied a 331kWh containerised battery storage solution with DC bi-directional charge and discharge capabilities which can operate under high voltage and current safely. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries actually developed the batteries in Japan and assembled them in Taiwan, where Delta is also headquartered. Defat also supplied four 50kW PV inverters and four 125kW power conditioning systems with DC connection to the batteries as well as AC connection to the grid, again allowing for bi-directional power flows.

The hybrid’s battery will help integrate solar PV production along with a reciprocating engine, smoothing out fluctuations in solar production, while a press release stated that Delta is also developing “next-generation applications” for its storage range including virtual power plant (VPP), enabling self-consumption of solar and grid stabilisation functions.

“The system’s main advantage is its ability to stabilise the volatile output of renewable energy by combining three types of power sources, ultimately enabling low-cost power supply provided by an environmentally-friendly, multi-purpose distributed generation system,” a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries statement read.

Executive overhaul at zinc battery player Eos

30 July 2019: Aqueous zinc battery maker Eos Energy Storage has made three executive appointments, including a new CEO, CFO and Senior Commercial Advisor.

Two of the new appointments have come from GE group companies. New CEO Joe Mastrangelo was president and chief exec at GE Power’s Gas Power Systems division, joining the Eos board as an advisor in 2018. Meanwhile, new Senior Commercial Advisor Kevin Walsh was previously MD and head of US renewable energy for GE Energy Financial Services. New CFO Mack Treece is the former CEO of energy software company Viridity Energy Solutions before its sale to Ormat in 2017.

The company continues to follow its pilot deployment with efforts to commercialise and scale-up its technology. In June, Energy-Storage.news reported that the company had just supplied two 120kWh systems in the US and was eyeing the UK market for possible opportunities. Eos has also said that a 40MWh project for developer Convergent Energy + Power, for which contracts were signed in 2015, is still going ahead. 

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