A partnership to take on the micro-grid sector has been formed by battery maker Samsung SDI and ABB, the Swiss-headquartered power and automation specialist.
The two companies announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) last week to promote micro-grids, with lithium-ion battery systems as an integral component in all territories. Under the terms of the cooperation the partnership will take a two-tiered approach of using micro-grid technology to improve electrical access for the world’s rural or remote populations as well as to support the stable running of networks in the developed world.
This is likely to involve pairing batteries with solar PV and other renewable energy generation sources. Samsung SDI supplies batteries to companies in solar for a number of applications, including the residential ranges produced by Sharp and latterly Hanwha Q Cells, while ABB is involved in a number of solar and related power electronics fields such as inverters. ABB is also one of the main partners of the Solar Impulse 2 solar airplane currently making its round-the-world flight.
In the past couple of weeks, two of the biggest US-based renewable energy companies have also committed to micro-grids. Residential leasing giant SolarCity launched an international offering that uses Tesla batteries with options for no money down financing, while developer SunEdison will work on a number of micro-grids in India using vanadium redox flow batteries by Imergy Power Systems.
As might be expected, Samsung SDI will provide batteries and battery systems to the new deal, while ABB will do the rest- providing “technologies for electrification, control optimisation, stabilisation and expert consulting services”.