While renewable energy has become popular and more relevant in today’s energy grid, it is not always available when needed. However, one major transmitter of power has removed the technology to help them better incorporate renewable energy into their power grid.
Tennet, a European firm, announced that it was going to the be the first on the continent to team up with Sonnen, a battery supplier, and revitalize the blockchain concept to incorporate renewable energy so that it can be used when their customers need the extra power. This represents a fundamental change in how renewable energy sources are used since previously they were only available during daylight hours or when the wind was constant. Now, the energy created can be stored and used when needed or the batteries can be used when excessive energy is available for storage purposes.
Under the old system in Germany, if extra power was needed it had to be delivered from other power plants which may be hundreds of miles away. With the new battery storage, energy that was created from renewable sources can be stored and tapped when needed to make up for any deficiency. The result is not only faster access to power, it also solves one of the biggest concerns with today’s energy grid in Germany.
Currently, energy transmission operators in Europe have to manage a congested network that makes up their power grid, using technology that is expensive and requiring considerable precision to operate. This is especially true with third-party plants having to be contracted to provide extra power while cutting down on wind output which only seems counterproductive. By adding large battery storage units, Tennet may be able to solve several issues at once while promoting a more renewable energy-friendly policy.
The idea sprang from the use of batteries in homes that use solar or wind power. The application seemed logical for networking in a grid if the battery capacity was available and could be stored on site. This means that when excess energy is created, it can be readily stored and used when needed. Of course, this does not address the issue of what happens when the batteries are full and excess energy is still being created.
This new approach does have advancing technology to thank for creating batteries that can hold substantial amounts of electricity. Before, batteries of that size needed to be replaced frequently because their components would no longer be able to fully recharge. Today, it is possible to overcome that issue with far less cost.
However, one effect may be to greatly reduce operating costs once the batteries are installed. It is estimated that the current network grid cost about 800 million euros, a large part of which could be saved by using battery storage instead. Plus, it would greatly reduce the demands of running an energy transmission network since most of the energy could be tapped from a singular source in using batteries. This may not eliminate the need for networking the grid, but it would greatly reduce the demand in tapping for energy that is hundreds of miles away.