Florida Power and Light set to build world’s largest solar-powered battery system

largest battery

Florida Power & Light Co. announced plans to build the world’s largest solar-powered battery system, which will have four times the capacity of the largest battery system in operation. This is part of the utility’s modernization plan to accelerate the retirement of two fossil fuel generation units.

The future FPL Manatee Energy Storage Center will have 409 megawatts of capacity – the equivalent of approximately 100 million iPhone batteries – when it begins serving customers in late 2021 and will be charged by an existing FPL solar power plant in Manatee County. By deploying energy from the batteries when there is higher demand for electricity, FPL will offset the need to run other power plants – further reducing emissions and saving customers money through avoided fuel costs.

In addition to the energy storage system in Manatee County, FPL is planning smaller battery installations across the state, numerous solar power plants and efficiency upgrades to existing combustion turbines at other power plants to replace the 1,638 megawatts of generating capacity. The project will save customers more than $100 million and eliminate more than 1 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

— Solar Builder magazine

Florida Power and Light set to build world’s largest solar-powered battery system

largest battery

Florida Power & Light Co. announced plans to build the world’s largest solar-powered battery system, which will have four times the capacity of the largest battery system in operation. This is part of the utility’s modernization plan to accelerate the retirement of two fossil fuel generation units.

The future FPL Manatee Energy Storage Center will have 409 megawatts of capacity – the equivalent of approximately 100 million iPhone batteries – when it begins serving customers in late 2021 and will be charged by an existing FPL solar power plant in Manatee County. By deploying energy from the batteries when there is higher demand for electricity, FPL will offset the need to run other power plants – further reducing emissions and saving customers money through avoided fuel costs.

In addition to the energy storage system in Manatee County, FPL is planning smaller battery installations across the state, numerous solar power plants and efficiency upgrades to existing combustion turbines at other power plants to replace the 1,638 megawatts of generating capacity. The project will save customers more than $100 million and eliminate more than 1 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

— Solar Builder magazine

Dynapower debuts its next-gen utility-scale energy storage inverters

dynapower

Dynapower just introduced its next generation utility-scale energy storage inverters. The air-cooled CPS-1500 and CPS-3000 are available in both indoor and outdoor configurations, and work with all battery chemistries.

Each feature a high-efficiency, three-level topology designed for both grid-tied and microgrid applications. The Gen 4 CPS inverters also feature Dynapower’s proprietary Dynamic Transfer technology, which allows for the seamless transfer from grid-tied to microgrid mode, and industry-leading Black Start capabilities. Multiple CPS units can be paralleled together to meet the sizing and power needs of any energy storage installation.

Dynapower’s CPS inverters are an integrated solution containing all required protective features, as well as an AC output breaker, and DC disconnect switch. This creates cost savings for end users and integrators when compared with other inverters that require additional add-on items needed for battery integration. CPS inverters can be supplied with MV transformers to easily integrate customer supplied battery systems into any network.

Key technologies

  • BLACK START — In the event of a complete system power outage, Dynapower’s patented Black Start restores power to the facility without the need for external power. Dynapower’s Black Start technology can start distribution networks even with transformer magnetizing currents that exceed the power rating of the inverters. Multiple CPS units can be restarted at once.
  • E COMP— A Volt Var function that provides immediate and automatic voltage support to the grid.
  • F COMP— A Hz-Watt function that provides immediate and automatic frequency support to the grid.
  • DYNAMIC TRANSFER — Dynapower’s proprietary patented Dynamic Transfer algorithm monitors grid stability and, upon detecting a grid disturbance, disconnects from the grid and transitions to stand-alone battery backup power mode on the load connection. The transition is seamless to the critical loads and supports 100% phase imbalance in UF mode.

— Solar Builder magazine

Consumers Energy outlines new clean energy plan for Michigan, includes 5 GW of solar by 2030

Consumers Energy

Consumers Energy and other stakeholders have filed a settlement with the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) on the company’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) outlining its Clean Energy Plan for Michigan. Consumers Energy is Michigan’s largest energy provider and the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy, providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.7 million of the state’s 10 million residents.

The company filed its IRP with the MPSC last June, which set the company’s Clean Energy Plan in motion, outlining the path to zero coal. The plan details how the company will meet the state’s energy needs with increased use of energy efficiency programs that save customers money and energy, along with significantly more renewable energy.

The settlement agreement supporting Consumers Energy’s plan comes after more than a year of listening to key stakeholders’ ideas and input. The next step in the process is for the MPSC to review the settlement agreement.

Don’t miss our annual Mounting Guide edition in May — subscribe to Solar Builder magazine (print or digital) for FREE today

The settlement includes:

  • CARBON EMISSION REDUCTION: Carbon emissions would be reduced by more than 90 percent by 2040.
  • RENEWABLE ENERGY: Consumers Energy’s renewable energy supply would increase by 400 percent with the addition of 5 GW of solar to the company’s system through competitive bidding by 2030.
  • COAL RETIREMENTS: The elimination of coal as a fuel source to generate electricity by 2040.
  • AFFORDABLE ENERGY: The plan significantly ramps up Consumers Energy’s successful energy efficiency programs, which have already saved customers $2 billion since 2009. Through a competitive bidding process, Consumers Energy will provide customers with the most affordable prices for new renewable energy sources.

“We’re proud to be partnering with major business customers, residential advocates and environmental organizations to bring the cleanest and most competitively priced energy to the people of Michigan so our home state can grow and prosper,” Poppe said. “We’re grateful for the contributions of all stakeholders throughout this process and look forward to the MPSC’s decision on our plan.”

— Solar Builder magazine

Cypress Creek Renewables adds PV plant drone inspection services from Raptor Maps

Raptor Maps

Raptor Maps, a Boston-based software company focused on helping enterprise solar companies adopt drone technology to reduce asset management costs and increase plant production, reached an agreement with Cypress Creek Renewables to support their internal UAS team with data analytics and reports from PV plant inspections. Raptor Maps software will be used by the Cypress Creek UAS team to automate the processing and generate reports on over 300 drone solar inspections to be performed in 2019.

“We realized early on that a robust aerial thermography program was something we wanted to pursue. We started scanning sites in 2016 and in early 2017, ordering a fleet of drones and staffing a team of electrical engineers and qualified technicians to lead our Reliability Engineering program. We quickly found that combining technical analysis with boots on the ground resulted in improved facility performance and reduced O&M costs by minimizing truck rolls,” said Kyle Cooper, Vice President of Operations and Maintenance of Cypress Creek Renewables.

Don’t miss our annual Mounting Guide edition in May — subscribe to Solar Builder magazine (print or digital) for FREE today. All the cool kids are doing it.

Raptor Maps provides software for artificial intelligence and PV system analytics, and has built the most enterprise-friendly data model in the industry. The company analyzed more than 4,000 MW (4 GW) of PV systems in 2018 across 6 continents. Its analytics are in compliance with both asset owner requirements and infrared thermography standards.

Cypress Creek Renewables, one of the largest integrated solar energy companies in the U.S. has developed one of the leading internal UAS programs for the inspection of PV plants, with over 3 GW of self-performed solar drone inspections since inception. The company has worked with Raptor Maps on a proof-of-concept pilot over the last several months. After successful completion of this 150 MW pilot, they decided to roll-out the Raptor Maps solution on all solar inspections in 2019 and the following years.

“This partnership allows our Reliability Engineering team to focus on inspections, repairs, and analysis and leave the heavy lifting of reviewing thousands of images for anomalies to automation without measurable impacts to accuracy. The partnership will lead to improved report turnaround time, more time devoted to inspections and repairs, and most importantly improved facility performance for our customers,” said Kyle Cooper.

How it works

The software platform automates the review of the tens of thousands of infrared (thermal) and high-definition (digital color) images captured during a solar farm inspection, identifying and localizing DC-health and environmental anomalies impacting plant performance. Analytics generated from the inspection are delivered inside the Raptor Maps web-based software platform, with specifics provided on the exact location of each anomaly following internal naming conventions, each anomaly’s affect on plant production, and a prioritization of all issues for streamlined decision making regarding further investigation in the field.

Software modifications were made by Raptor Maps with input from the Cypress Creek UAS team to ensure all reporting met the organizations internal requirements. Final inspection results can be downloaded locally as a final report in several formats or can be viewed online by anyone involved with the PV asset.

— Solar Builder magazine