As more electricity is provided by renewable generators, there are fewer conventional generators providing stability. Schwungrad Energie Ltd's hybrid flywheel/battery plant in Co Offaly is providing system services to stabilise the grid. John Rutherford reports
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The Electrical & Electronic and Energy & Environment divisions of Engineers Ireland kicked off their 2016/17 events session with a presentation on ‘Flywheel/Battery Hybrid & Controls for Grid Stabilisation’ in Clyde Road on 22 September.

Frank Burke, technical director of Schwungrad Energie Ltd, outlined the specific problem of integrating intermittent and unpredictable renewable energy-generation sources, which at times may account for over 50% of grid input. With a relatively small national grid, with limited DC interconnects, the result is grid instability and lack of inertia.

As the proportion of wind and photovoltaic input to the grid increases, there is not enough conventional generator and steam turbine plant to provide grid stability. New plant is therefore required to provide system services to stabilise the grid without also having to provide energy.

Burke then provided an overview of the Schwungrad Energie/EirGrid pilot project at the former ESB Power Station in Rhode, Co Offaly, where testing of the hybrid plant (Beacon Power 160KW flywheels and Hitachi Chemical 160KW battery) is at an advanced stage.

The pilot plant provides synthetic inertia to the grid via enhanced frequency regulation. The technological marriage of flywheel kinetic energy and battery chemical-energy storage delivers the best of both technologies, manifest in a fully scalable solution that features very fast response times and high output over an extended period of time.

As more and more conventional energy generation plant is replaced by renewable energy plant, it is envisaged that the industry demand for energy-less stability inertia will continue to grow.

Donal Bourke, country manager of Yokogawa, provided a high level walk-through of the crucial pilot plant system controls, developed in conjunction with EirGrid. The key requirements were defined as:

(a) Real-time control including secure remote operations;
(b) Recording of plant key data for key performance indicator (KPI) monitoring and analysis;
(c) Remote engineering capability; and
(d) PLC system for processing and communications.

The control system architecture integrates the sub-station, battery plant, flywheel plant and plant master controller where the primary features are agility, efficiency and security. How quickly the system detects and responds to grid frequency fluctuations and how long that response can be maintained are KPIs.

Bourke concluded with a not-too-distant future vision of the next generation of system controls, the industrial internet of things with cloud-based SCADA platforms.

Energy & Environment Division Committee member Bernice Doyle managed the Q&A, including questions from remote attendees viewing the presentation on live webcast. Electrical & Electronic Division Chairman Karl O’Keeffe delivered the Vote of Thanks.

The next Electrical & Electronic Division event is SIGFOX Nationwide Telemetry on 13 October at 6:30pm in Clyde Road. The speaker is Patrick Robinson, business development director of VT Networks, the SIGFOX Network Operator (SNO) in Ireland.

http://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/s-beacon-20-MW-plant-aerial-v_1-sm_2_400_267_100.jpghttp://www.engineersjournal.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/s-beacon-20-MW-plant-aerial-v_1-sm_2_400_267_100-300x267.jpgMary Anne CarriganElecelectrical,energy,grid,renewables
The Electrical & Electronic and Energy & Environment divisions of Engineers Ireland kicked off their 2016/17 events session with a presentation on ‘Flywheel/Battery Hybrid & Controls for Grid Stabilisation’ in Clyde Road on 22 September. Frank Burke, technical director of Schwungrad Energie Ltd, outlined the specific problem of integrating intermittent...