The utility grid is pivoting from what has been a relatively low-tech industry that distributes energy from centralized plants, towards a future of smart, networked, microgrids teeming with distributed renewable generation. As renewable energy technologies reach higher levels of penetration within the energy mix, the electrical supply becomes less dispatchable, and more dependent on local weather conditions. Advanced storage capabilities are essential in order to mitigate these effects and provide stable power to the grid.
However, there is some debate about how to deploy these storage technologies. Should energy storage be coupled with the renewable energy generation so that the electricity being fed into the grid is stable, and can meet specified ramp rates? Should the energy storage be located at the end user to shield their consumption from the fluctuations in the energy supply caused by intermittent generation? Or should energy storage be connected to the grid independent from energy sources and loads?
This in-depth research project investigates if there is any synergistic benefit to coupling energy storage with electrical generation or electrical consumption in a real-time pricing market. It also seeks to determine the primary drivers of economic benefit within this market, and which parameters can be optimized for maximum monetary value.
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