How industrial batteries are filling in the gaps left by solar and wind power plants
Renewable energy systems are on the rise, but the global shift to clean energy has not been as smooth as expected with the lack of storage solutions. Battery technology still needs to keep up with advances in renewables, which makes solving the storage problem a pressing issue.
This is where industrial batteries can play a significant role.
How batteries are a limiting factor to decarbonisation
The key to fighting climate change is decarbonisation. Decarbonising the world means switching from fossil fuels to electricity that is powered by renewables. Hence, the increase in solar, wind, hydro, and other zero-carbon technologies to power homes, cars, and power grids.
Here lies the problem. Sometimes the sun does not show up, or the wind does not blow as hard as we would want it. Solar panels can only generate power when it’s sunny, and wind turbines only produce power when the wind is blowing.
Since we cannot control the availability of solar and wind sources, we have to store as much clean energy as we can when these renewable sources are present.
Batteries are the primary method of storing captured wind and solar energy – for use during cloudy and quiet days or when the demand exceeds the supply.
Unfortunately, battery storage technology needs to catch up to solar and wind power generation. The industry has been relying on outdated lead-acid batteries that are not only heavy and inefficient but contain toxic chemicals too. They are also high maintenance and expensive to replace.
Now here’s the good news: the recent introduction of lithium batteries is about to solve many of the issues of lead-acid batteries.
Role of batteries in energy storage systems
The application of lithium-ion batteries in electricity storage has risen over the years, allowing industry players to now scale their commercial and industrial power generation efforts.
With battery prices on the decline, battery systems for electric vehicles (EVs) and energy suppliers have become more accessible. This could finally open the bottleneck that has slowed down our transition to a GHG-free future.
Industrial batteries enable utility providers and grid operators to fill the gaps left by solar and wind power plants – reducing excess energy waste.
According to IRENA, battery systems can provide reserve capacity, black-start capability and other grid functions. These systems can also upgrade mini-grids, facilitate the self-consumption of rooftop solar power, and store electricity in EVs.
Energy storage solutions can now effectively store solar, wind, and hydro energy at a massive scale. They could be the key to helping Australia recover post-pandemic and reach its goal of achieving a green economy by 2050.
Batteries: keys to securing a green future
Batteries are the future of clean energy as they allow renewable energy producers to consume clean energy even when supply is temporarily unavailable at night or during overcast days.
Combining renewable energy with large-scale battery solutions is more economically viable than generating power in traditional energy plants. Both the Australian Government and industry regulators have acknowledged the importance of this pairing in maintaining a reliable electricity grid.
Did you know that Victoria is home to the world’s largest battery?
Aptly called Victoria’s Big Battery, this 450MWh utility-scale energy storage facility built in 2021 can store excess power for distribution during network outages.
Before that, the Hornsdale Power Reserve in South Australia which was built in 2017 had a 129MWh storage capacity that was upgraded to 194MWh in 2020.
Revolutionising transportation with battery-powered vehicles
Batteries are not just powering our grids. More and more car owners are switching to battery-powered electric vehicles in an effort to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions on the road.
According to the World Economic Forum, the demand for lithium-ion batteries to power EVs has grown from just 0.5 GWh in 2010 to a whopping 526 GWh in 2020.
If the transportation sector is serious about decarbonisation, then the electrification of vehicles is the answer.
Benefits of solar batteries for business
The pairing of renewable energy systems with industrial batteries also has many benefits for commercial establishments.
1. Substantial savings on utility bills
Businesses can save thousands of dollars in utility costs by installing a solar power system that also includes battery storage solutions. This way, they do not have to rely on the grid for day-to-day operations. Consequently, whatever excess power that commercial panels generate can be stored in batteries for later use.
2. Power backup during emergencies
With solar power stored in batteries, these systems are ideal as a backup option when the power suddenly goes out. This is especially helpful for businesses that are located in areas that are prone to blackouts.
3. Reliable power supply
Commercial solar batteries are a reliable energy source even when solar panels are not getting any sunshine.
4. Off-grid application
With solar batteries, businesses can finally be independent of the power grid. That means there could be no more power fluctuations that affect daily operations.
5. Significant reduction in operational expenses
Solar panels already help business owners save money on electric bills. But with battery storage solutions, there’s even more cash flow and fewer operational expenses.
6. Zero noise pollution
Apart from zero emissions, solar batteries are noiseless, so they do not contribute to the noise pollution around us. These devices run on silent components without disrupting business operations like a power generator would.
7. Boost corporate image
Decarbonisation has now gone full steam across Australia. Businesses that upgrade their solar systems to include commercial solar batteries demonstrate their commitment to going green – which could boost their corporate image and improve customer perception in the long run.
The future of a decarbonised world
The demand for solar batteries in the Australian power grid is expected to keep rising as technology improves and costs decline. A number of government programs have also made solar batteries affordable through subsidies, accelerating the adoption of battery technology by Australian homes and businesses.
In Australia, battery storage is combined with renewable energy for three purposes:
- Power the national electricity grid.
- Attach to meters in homes, businesses, or industrial operations.
- Power off-grid, microgrid, and areas with a poor connection.
If you are looking for an industrial-grade battery solution provider, let JPAC Batteries serve you! We source batteries only from award-winning suppliers, including Battery Energy and MPower. You can find some of our batteries in data centres, airports, hospitals, and paper mills.
Give us a call today on 0422 629 870 to learn more about our industrial batteries.