Energy storage is set to become the next ‘big thing’ that could revolutionise electricity use. While Nissan’s vision of homes powered by the batteries of self-drive electric cars might be some way off, storage systems tripled in 2015 and this year South Korea unveiled the world's largest lithium ion battery installation for matching supply and demand on its grid.
At 24MW, the new battery system takes the total capacity from storage at the Seoul site to 56MW enabling Korea Electric Power Corporation to manage demand on the grid without resorting to costly ‘spinning’ generation reserves. This is keeping generators idling so they can react immediately to increase in demand.
Energy storage on this scale stabilises the grid, which subsequently improves reliability, lowers operational costs and reduces a fossil-fueled power station’s environmental impact by cutting fuel consumption for reserve generation.