The two systems – a 24 MW system a 16 MW system –have been operational since January. Along with a Kokam 16 MW Lithium Titanate Oxide (LTO) ESS system deployed in August 2015, they will provide South Korea's largest utility, Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) with 56 MW of energy storage capacity for frequency regulation. The three systems are part of the world’s largest ESS frequency regulation project, which is scheduled to deploy 500 MW of battery-based energy storage when it is completed in 2017.
The 24 MW system is the largest capacity Lithium NMC ESS used for frequency regulation in the world. In addition to improving grid reliability, the Kokam ESSs will enable KEPCO to improve its operation efficiency by reducing its need for spinning power generation reserves. This will allow it to shift energy generation to lower cost, more efficient power plants and decrease “wear and tear” on all its power plants. The three Kokam ESSs will deliver an estimated annual savings of $13 million in fuel costs, providing fuel cost savings three times larger than the ESSs purchase price over the systems’ lifetimes. In addition, by reducing the amount of fossil fuels burnt for frequency regulation, they will help to reduce KEPCO’s greenhouse gas emissions.
“Kokam specializes in the development of advanced battery technologies for the world’s most demanding Energy Storage System applications, including frequency regulation, which needs systems that deliver high power, fast recharge rates and long cycle lives” said Ike Hong, vice president of Kokam’s Power Solutions Division. “Our Energy Storage Systems provide KEPCO with the performance it needs to precisely and cost-effectively regulate frequency on the South Korean grid, helping it ensure the stability of this grid, improve its operational efficiency and lower its greenhouse gas emissions.”
Hwang Woohyun, Ph.D, KEPCO's senior vice president, head of Innovative Energy Business Division, added that in the US and Europe, Kokam has already acquired a reputation for its lithium ion battery technology and that the company proved its worth against stiff competition during the KEPCO frequency regulation project procurement process.
The new 24 MW and 16 MW lithium NMC ESSs utilize Kokam’s Ultra High Power NMC battery technology, designed for high-power energy storage applications such as frequency regulation, wind or large solar power system ramp rate control, Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) and voltage support. The systems also utilize Kokam’s KCE 40-foot container which features a direct cooling design. The container’s Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system only regulates temperatures inside the system’s racks rather than the entire container, resulting in 70 percent less air conditioning auxiliary load than standard containers.
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