NRStor has partnered with General Compression and SustainX to build large-scale, fuel-free compressed air energy storage (CAES) in Ontario.
CAES absorbs surplus energy during low-demand or transmission-constrained periods and returns it back to the grid when needed. CAES is a cost -effective, long-duration energy storage technology that – when added to the system along with wind generation – can effectively provide reliable base load power, something wind generation cannot do on its own.
Based on a study conducted by NRStor and renowned energy modeler Dr. Andy Ford, deploying 1,000 MW of CAES could save Ontario ratepayers up to $8 billion over a 20-year period while helping to reduce the province's carbon emissions
According to NRStor, using compressed air storage technology will make renewable energy more accessible. Currently, energy is produced when winds are favorable – which may not be when the power is required on the grid. In order to balance the grid, gas plants currently fill the gaps in wind generation. With the use of CAES technology, the need for gas plants is reduced, says NRStor. Surplus energy generated at off-peak times can be stored and released when demand is greater or during lulls in wind generation.
General Compression estimates that the installed cost of its long-duration storage project will be less than one-tenth of the estimated $350/kWh for battery storage projected for the year 2022. The companies will work together in taking a phased approach to project development that aligns with Ontario's need for a flexible, reliable and efficient energy grid, NRStor notes.
For more information on how storage can be deployed to improve grid reliability and enable greater penetration of renewable energy, visit the Hybrid Energy Innovations event site here.