The technology group Wärtsilä will supply a 200-megawatt / 400-megawatt hour energy storage system under an Engineered Equipment Delivery contract to Zenobē, an electric vehicle fleet and battery storage specialist, in Blackhillock, Scotland. The project will be the first in the world to deliver stability services using a transmission-connected battery, supporting the United Kingdom’s transition to a zero-carbon energy network by preparing the grid for an increased supply of renewable energy. The energy storage system will be one of the largest in the UK. The order was booked to Wärtsilä’s order intake in February 2023.
The ESS is the first project to be delivered under National Grid’s NOA Stability Pathfinder programme. Operated by Zenobē, the ESS will assist grid operators in the management of challenges related to balancing supply and demand, power stability and constraints. This will ensure network demand and customer cost expectations are met. Located in north-eastern Scotland, the project is ideally suited to integrate nearby offshore wind energy projects in the North Sea with the UK’s energy grid.
The battery system will provide stability services to the National Grid Electricity System Operator, including short-circuit level and true synthetic inertia, which are essential for the grid to function efficiently as fossil fuel plants phase out. The project couples Wärtsilä’s ESS with inverter technology, an innovative solution that pushes the technical boundaries of the types of support that batteries can provide to the grid.
The GEMS Digital Energy Platform, Wärtsilä’s sophisticated energy management system, will control the ESS and leverage machine learning along with historic and real-time data analytics to optimise operations, while easing network constraints by importing electricity at times of peak renewable generation. Utilising the GEMS Fleet Direct and Power Plant Controller, GEMS will allow Zenobē to remotely monitor, operate, identify, and diagnose equipment with unrivalled safety, reliability, and flexibility.
“Wärtsilä is proud to deliver this pioneering energy storage project alongside Zenobē. This is a first-of-its-kind project that will help balance the UK grid as it targets 100% renewable energy generation,” said Andy Tang, Vice President, Energy Storage & Optimisation at Wärtsilä. “Energy storage is playing a critical role in delivering a stable supply of electricity during the global transition to renewable energy. Alongside our partners and customers, Wärtsilä is leading the way to a clean energy future.”
“The battery at Blackhillock brings together the very latest in grid scale battery technology that will be crucial to lower consumer bills and enable more renewable energy onto the grid. With Wärtsilä and other project partners, we look forward to delivering this significant grid infrastructure project that will be an important milestone in the UK’s net zero transition,” said Semih Oztreves, Director of Network Infrastructure at Zenobē.
The facility will include Wärtsilä’s GridSolv Quantum, a fully integrated, modular, and compact energy storage system. The project is expected to become operational by summer 2024.