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Utility EWS and developer MW Storage expand Swiss BESS to 28MW

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Utility EWS AG and developer MW Storage have completed the expansion of a battery energy storage system (BESS) project in Switzerland from 20MW to 28MW, making it the country’s largest.

The companies inaugurated the newly expanded project last week in a ceremony last week (24 May), which adds 8MW to a 20MW/18MWh BESS that MW Storage originally commissioned in 2020.

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The announcement didn’t reveal the MWh energy storage capacity of the expanded project. Prior to the expansion it was the joint-largest BESS in the country by megawatts along with a 20MW/20MWh system owned by independent power producer (IPP) Axpo.

EWS’ BESS project has primarily been deployed to help transmission system operator (TSO) Swissgrid keep the grid stable, via the provision of frequency response services to maintain a 50hz frequency.

It is being monetised in the Swiss electricity market by both CKW, part of Axpo, and utility Alpiq, the announcement said. The BESS is part of a network of power plants, consumers and batteries, it added.

The large-scale BESS market in Switzerland has been relatively quiet with renewable penetration on the country’s grid still relatively low. Axpo commissioned its BESS in February this year while utility Thurplus commissioned a 3MW system in September last year.

But Switzerland was the location for one of the largest energy storage projects commissioned in recent years, a 20GWh pumped hydro energy storage (PHES) unit which started operations in June 2022 in the Canton of Valais.

MW Storage is a developer of BESS projects which is also active in the German market, with a 100MW/200MWh project underway that it claimed is the country’s largest.

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