Iberdrola Commissions Lithium-ion Energy Storage System in Spain

Iberdrola subsidiary, i-DE has commissioned the first electrical energy storage system with lithium-ion batteries for distribution networks in Spain.

Iberdrola Energy Storage Spain

Iberdrola has announced that its electricity distribution arm, i-DE has commissioned and inaugurated the first electrical energy storage system with lithium-ion batteries for distribution networks in Spain. The project, which is the first in the country, is located in the Murcian municipal district of Caravaca de la Cruz and will improve the quality of the energy supply in the surrounding area, as well as the use of solar energy generated in the area. 

The storage system, with a capacity of 3 MWh, can operate in isolation and, in the event of an interruption in supply, will be able provide up to five hours of electricity to the main districts in the surrounding area: Cañada de la Cruz, Inazares, Moralejo, Barranda, El Moral and Los Royos.

The special circumstances in the rural environment around Caravaca de la Cruz have determined the choice of this enclave for this innovative solution. In recent years, the area has been recording very adverse weather conditions that cause incidents in the distribution network. Also, it is an area consisting of various small and scattered centres of consumption, so a fault can leave several villages without service. To this is added the long distances that have to be covered to reach the source of the problem, which further complicates the resolution of incidents.

The traditional solution would have been to construct 22 km of overhead power lines, crossing environmental protection areas. This is the reason why an innovative solution was chosen, based on energy storage installed at a point where overhead cables intersect, allowing several areas to be served with a single battery. 

The project has shown that batteries can improve the continuity of supply in contingency situations, as well as the use of photovoltaic plants connected to the impacted grid, including in isolation using only renewable energy. The batteries, in short, constitute a complement to the conventional local operation.

There are several large photovoltaic plants in Caravaca de la Cruz that upload electricity to the grid during the hours with the most intense sunlight. A battery with these characteristics is able to adjust the voltage to the appropriate values and be ready to intervene as a second source of power supply in the event of a power failure.

To achieve this, it has a smart storage system that is able to assess the situation and decide what part of the network will remain in operation from the battery, taking into account actual consumption at that time, the generation capacity of photovoltaic plants nearby and the state of charge of the battery, among other aspects.

The system estimates both the consumption and the potential renewable generation power of the solar plants in the area at that time and for the following hours. It can, thus, take advantage of local power generation and, in addition, absorb excess energy, in case of excess production. 

The combination of this battery and the electricity produced by the photovoltaic plants in the area will significantly reduce the interruption times in the power supply during an emergency.

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Ayush Verma

Ayush Verma

Ayush is a staff writer at saurenergy.com and writes on renewable energy with a special focus on solar and wind. Prior to this, as an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he worked as a correspondent for iamrenew.com.

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