SCHENECTADY, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--GE’s [NYSE: GE] Energy Storage business announced today the first European sale of its Durathon* energy storage system. Western Power Distribution (WPD), a major distribution network operator in the U.K, will install five Durathon 100 kilowatt-hour energy storage systems during Q3 2013 as part of “Project FALCON” (Flexible Approaches to Low Carbon Optimized Networks), a four year project led by WPD.
The project is partially funded through the U.K. Office of Gas and Electricity Markets’ (Ofgem’s) Low Carbon Network Fund and aims to develop a new computer-based modeling tool to identify the best way of delivering investment on the network. The system will be able to identify the most cost effective ‘smart’ or ‘conventional’ way of delivering additional network capacity to facilitate the UK Low Carbon Transition Plan. One of the ‘smart’ methods being trialed is Energy Storage.
“We selected the Durathon energy storage system because it provides the performance and functionality we need while being small enough to fit into our network’s substations,” said Ben Godfrey, Innovation and Low Carbon Networks Engineer with WPD. “The real-time performance data collected during the trial will help us manage our network more efficiently, which, in the long run, should minimise costs for customers.”
The project will be the first time that GE Energy Storage has integrated its Durathon energy storage system with a distribution management system (DMS) in the European market. WPD plans to install 100 kilowatt-hour systems at five of its high voltage substations in Milton Keynes, located 45 miles northwest of London.
“This trial will demonstrate the impact that the Durathon energy storage system can have in a real-world, utility distribution network,” said Prescott Logan, General Manager of GE Energy Storage. “It is designed to provide vital data that can be used to enhance utility services and reduce operating expenses — a savings that could ultimately be passed on to customers.”
During the trial, WPD plans to use the Durathon systems to enhance network efficiency through voltage support, improved power quality and electrical noise reduction. The energy storage systems also are expected to help WPD defer expensive network upgrades.
*Durathon is a trademark of General Electric Company.
About Western Power Distribution
Western Power Distribution is the electricity distribution network operator for the Midlands, South Wales and the South West regions of the United Kingdom. The company delivers electricity to more than 7.7 million customers over a 55,300 square kilometers service area. Its network consists of 216,000 km of overhead lines and underground cables, and 184,000 substations.
Ofgem’s Low Carbon Networks Fund was established as part of its current price control arrangements for electricity distribution businesses (DNOs). It allows up to £500million of support between 2010 and 2015 to projects sponsored by companies that trial new technology, operating and commercial arrangements.
WPD now has five Tier Two projects and eleven of the 34 Tier One projects. This is more than any other U.K. Distribution Network Operator for both categories.
About GE’s Energy Storage Business
GE Energy Storage, a unit of GE Transportation, works to enable safer, efficient and cost effective storage, distribution and utilization of energy where it’s needed and when it’s needed. As a global technology leader and supplier of advanced battery energy storage systems, we provide Durathon Battery modules and complete energy storage solutions to the Telecom, Energy Management, Power Generation, Grid Operation, Backup and Motive power industries. GE Energy Storage is headquartered in Schenectady, New York, U.S.A. To learn more visit www.geenergystorage.com.
About GE Transportation
GE Transportation, a unit of GE (NYSE: GE), solves the world’s toughest transportation challenges. GE Transportation builds equipment that moves the rail, mining and marine industries. Our fuel-efficient and lower-emissions freight and passenger locomotives, diesel engines for rail, marine and stationary power applications, signaling and software solutions, drive systems for mining trucks, underground mining equipment, energy storage systems, and value-added services help customers grow. GE Transportation has approximately 13,000 employees. For more information visit www.getransportation.com.