• AES puts up energy storage facility

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    THE Philippine subsidiary of AES Corp., one of the world’s leading power companies, has started developing its first energy storage facility in the country.

    AES Philippines said the project —Masinloc Advancion TM Energy Storage Array, which is also the first in Asia—will provide 10 megawatts (MW) of interconnected capacity to the Luzon grid.

    The plant, which will be the first battery-based energy storage facility in the Philippines, will be located next to the Masinloc power plant in Zambales.

    AES Philippines has issued a Notice to Proceed to its construction contractor for the Masinloc project.

    Site work will begin by the end of 2015 and the facility is expected to be completed by the middle of next year.

    According to AES Philippines, the energy storage array will enhance grid reliability by providing fast response ancillary services like frequency regulation.

    “With more efficient balancing of supply and demand, it will also lower costs to consumers, help meet renewables targets, and improve the stability of Luzon’s transmission system,” AES Philippines said in a statement.

    Across the world, regulators and system operators are increasingly turning to advanced energy storage as a solution for ancillary and other grid services due to its flexibility, speed of response, scalability, and rapidly decreasing costs.

    This solution, AES pointed out, is particularly attractive to island grids that face unique challenges in instantaneously matching supply and demand across a smaller pool of resources.

    “Energy storage can perform this function more effectively than traditional grid resources, resulting in cost savings and lower emissions system-wide,” it added.

    John Zahurancik, president of AES Energy Storage, said the new Masinloc facility “will lower costs, reduce system-wide emissions and strengthen the electric grid for the Filipino people.”

    “We are excited to bring the benefits of energy storage to the Philippines,” said Zahurancik.

    For his part, Neeraj Bhat, AES Philippines managing director, said the project is part of their goal of making the Philippines a leader in embracing smart and innovative solutions to meet its customers’ power needs.

    “We see energy storage bringing significant benefits for customers in the Philippines, which is short on reserve capacity, has increasing levels of variable-output renewable plants, and faces challenges associated with an island-based grid system,” said Bhat.

    He said AES Philippines is closely working with key stakeholders including the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to achieve such goal.

    AES is a recognized world leader in the development and operation of battery-based energy storage.

    Globally, AES has 86 MW of energy storage projects in commercial operation and over 300 MW in construction or late stage development.

    AES was recently ranked the No. 1 Energy Storage Integrator in the 2015 Navigant Research Leaderboard Report.

    AES is actively developing other battery-based energy storage systems across the Philippines, including a project in Negros Occidental, which would improve the grid’s ability to incorporate the significant volume of renewable generation coming online in the Visayas in 2016.

    Last month, Bhat said they sent NGCP a “very competitive offer” to provide frequency regulation services from their Negros project.

    “We look forward to working with them on an ancillary services agreement so that the facility can help balance supply and demand on the Visayas grid, especially with all the new solar plants that will start operating in Negros next year,” he said.

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