Energy Storage Systems: What to search for

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By Contributing Author July 1, 2022

When deciding which Energy Storage System (ESS) to suggest or set up, it’s essential to know the variations between the choices of assorted producers. These variations typically maintain the important thing to deciphering Levelized Cost of Energy Storage (LCOES). One of essentially the most useful assets when evaluating the variations between numerous methods is to look at the product specification sheets.

Here is a reminder about what LCOES is and learn how to calculate it.

LCOES

While it is not uncommon to make buying selections primarily based on upfront worth, the LCOES considers the battery’s whole capability, the Depth of Discharge (DoD) that you simply intend to make use of, cycle life score on the DoD thought of, effectivity score, and whole ancillary prices over the lifetime of the battery. Below is a simplified LCOES calculation.

Here are a number of the most essential components of a specification sheet.

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Kilowatt Hour Capacity

Total rated kilowatt-hour capability is usually a battery’s nameplate kWh, and usable kilowatt-hour capability is the quantity of capability that you’ll use or are literally required to make the most of at a specified DoD by the producer. Both of those values present an estimate of how a lot energy a system can retailer, however usable kilowatt-hour is the % of energy you may really use out of the entire rated nameplate capability. Depending on the battery, there are totally different cost and discharge charges, recognized because the “C-rate”. This equates to the quantity of energy {that a} system can pull out of a battery in a particular timeframe. This metric offers you an thought of how a lot instantaneous in addition to long-term capability in kWh will be pulled from a system. It additionally dictates the cost and discharge fee of a battery.

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Depth of Discharge (DoD)

When making an attempt to find out which battery is most cost-effective, it’s important to evaluate the allowable or, extra importantly, warrantied depth of the discharge. For instance, some batteries are solely below guarantee once they aren’t discharged (or used) past 70% of their whole rated capability at a time. A producer like SimpliPhi®, a Briggs & Stratton model, has cobalt-free, Lithium-Ion batteries that may typically be discharged 80% to 100% with out negatively affecting their rated cycle life at every DoD. This leads to considerably extra out there energy to make use of hour over hour, that means the batteries will present extra worth over the span of their life with a guaranty to again it up.

Cycle Life or Throughput

Cycle life refers back to the variety of full cost and discharge cycles anticipated over a battery’s lifetime whereas it has at the least 80% of its unique revealed capability left, which is the trade normal end-of-life (EOL) definition. Some battery producers don’t maintain to the 80% EOL, which may make it troublesome to evaluate LCOES precisely. This specification, the entire kWh throughput capability over the battery’s warranted life, could also be introduced in both megawatt-hours or whole cycles.

End-of-Life Capacity

A battery reaches its EOL when it will possibly solely retailer a diminished proportion of its unique rated nameplate storage capability. SimpliPhi batteries have an EOL of 80%; different producers’ batteries have an EOL of solely 60% to 70%. That implies that after a 10-year warranted timeframe, or after biking the battery 10,000 instances at 80% DoD, the battery will nonetheless have 80% remaining capability. It will proceed for use far past the ten,000 cycles. End-of-life is a vital metric to think about on a comparative foundation when buying an ESS as a result of it’s a strong indicator of the worth the system will present over all the span of its life.

Ancillary Costs to Watch For

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To mitigate the danger of “thermal runaway” and hearth and be eligible for guarantee protection, cobalt-based lithium-ion batteries should be operated inside a slim ambient temperature vary. Maintaining a protected working temperature for the cobalt-based lithium batteries requires air flow, cooling, and thermal monitoring gear. This extra ancillary gear creates extra prices and dangers of failure in your energy storage system that aren’t mirrored within the “list price” per kWh of the lithium cobalt battery itself. While cobalt-based lithium-ion batteries could also be cheaper on an upfront $/kWh foundation, they’re much costlier on the level of set up and over the lifetime of the energy storage system. In addition, many cobalt-based lithium-ion battery producers void the guarantee if the required ambient temperature isn’t maintained and recorded every day.

Interested in studying extra about Briggs & Stratton energy storage choices? Get in contact with us.

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