Chinese utility State Power Investment Corporation through its subsidiary Shanghai Power Equipment Research Institute (SPERI), is set to pilot the feasibility of liquefied air energy storage technology.
The CRYOBattery technology will be used as a long-duration energy storage mechanism to enhance grid reliability and decarbonisation.
SPERI will pilot the technology in partnership with solutions company Sumitomo at the Binhai Power Station in Jiangsu, China.
Two configurations will be tested, one a 50MW/4hr system and the second a 50MW/8hr long-duration energy storage system.
The aim is to explore how long-duration energy storage can help shift renewable energy use to times when it is most needed, reduce renewables curtailment and enable energy flexibility for grid reliability.
The development comes as the need for long-duration storage facilities is set to accelerate to allow greater integration of renewable energy into grid networks.
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Expanding storage capacity and employing long-duration systems are critical for China, the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases from power generation, the largest consumer of coal and the world’s biggest deployer of renewable energy.
This means more renewable energy capacity can be utilitised to meet growing energy demand from industrialisation and can replace the country’s growing fleet of coal generators.
According to State Power Investment Corporation, which has a total of 74GW of renewables capacity from the company’s 190GW, the company will have the potential to expand its portfolio of low-carbon capacity by deploying long-duration storage systems.
Chen Honghai, President, SPERI said: “We are pleased to engage with Sumitomo SHI FW for this important demonstration study of LDES, which is the cornerstone of China’s energy transition plan to be carbon neutral by 2060.”
Tom Steitz, senior vice president of energy storage at Sumitomo added: “Long Duration Energy Storage is emerging as a critical need for electric grids to become 100% renewable. This collaboration with SPERI is an important step towards making this a reality.”
The announcement comes as China has set a target to deploy 30GW of new energy storage capacity by 2025.
In 2020 China’s storage portfolio reached 35GW, according to the China Energy Storage Alliance.