In a recent interview with SNL Energy, Duke Energy signaled interest in installing commercial battery storage projects in regulated markets. The development follows several battery storage pilot projects, as well as unregulated commercial installations in competitive, deregulated markets.
- Duke Energy has deployed pilot projects in a variety of regulated markets to test cost effectiveness and performance of different battery technologies
- Meanwhile, investments in unregulated commercial installations are possible because of the clear price signals provided in competitive, deregulated markets (e.g., fast frequency regulation)
- Duke Energy’s move to commercial installations in regulated markets is made possible by three key drivers:
- Declining costs of battery storage
- Leveraging operational lessons from battery storage pilot projects
- Growing comfort among regulators about the potential value of battery storage
- While Duke Energy did not identify specific use cases for regulated markets, the company recently announced a new hybrid energy storage system designed to demonstrate multiple service applications, including extended operational life, rapid response, real-time solar smoothing, and load shifting
- According to the Electric Power Research Institute, 887 MW of battery storage capacity were online in early 2016
Commercial installations in regulated markets signals the next step in the maturity of the battery storage as a grid solution. More importantly, it may become a major catalyst, opening new markets and rapidly accelerating the rate of storage deployment.
Utility Dive: Beyond Pilots: Duke Energy Looks to Install Storage in Regulated Market
SNL: Duke Energy Makes Business Case for Installing Battery Storage in Regulated Territories
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Additional Contributing Author: Taylor Huggins