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Nidec ASI to supply complete 5MW / 5MWh system to Martinique wind farm

Inauguration ceremony for Nidec ASI's 90MW project in Germany with utility Steag. Image: Steag / Nidec ASI.

Nidec ASI will be installing 5MW / 5MWh of battery energy storage at a utility-scale wind farm on the French island territory of Martinique, aimed at stabilising and maximising the flow of energy onto the grid.

The Grand Rivière wind project, a 14MW wind farm on the Caribbean island, which comprises seven wind turbines of 2MW capacity each and an annual energy output of around 40GWh, will be equipped with the battery energy storage system (BESS).

The BESS includes batteries, obviously, power conversion system, power management system and energy management system. According to Nidec ASI, the project’s main innovative aspect is the ability of the management, control and monitoring technology to accurately forecast electricity production, with the company claiming it raises forecast accuracy to 90%, from 70% in previously executed or comparable projects.

Nidec ASI is a subsidiary of Japan’s Nidec Group’s Industrial Solutions divison. In addition to renewable energy and energy storage projects, Nidec ASI is also involved in other sectors that include petrochemicals, iron and steel and industrial automation. The company has also this year announced a 49MW battery supply agreement to a UK project by EDF and in late 2016 inaugurated a 90MW, US$100 million energy storage project in Germany with utility Steag.

Wind even more vulnerable than solar PV

It’s the latest in a series of projects announced worldwide by various companies, agencies and utilities to mitigate the variable nature of energy production from wind farms, by using energy storage. While the use of BESS is perhaps more commonly thought of in the context of its coupling with solar PV, Nidec ASI said generation interruptions are “even more frequent and substantial” in wind energy, highlighting the useful role energy storage can play.

Energy-Storage.News has reported on several such installations in the past few months, including a completed 3MW energy storage system using BMW batteries at a 90MW Dutch wind farm, while a project proposed just a few days ago by developer Deepwater Wind would pair 40MWh of Tesla Powerpack utility-scale energy storage with a 144MW offshore wind farm off the US’ East Coast.