UK's largest battery ready to balance the grid

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund and flexible energy specialist Flexitricity have announced that the UK’s largest battery is now live.

Edinburgh based Flexitricity is optimising the Gresham House c.50MW / 75MWh battery, located in Thurcroft, South Yorkshire, generating revenue for the site while helping National Grid ESO balance supply and demand.

The asset went live in the Balancing Mechanism (BM) Reserve from Storage Trial and was then live in the BM immediately afterwards. The BM is a key tool National Grid ESO uses to balance supply and demand on the electricity system in real time. Through the BM, providers can offer to increase or decrease their generation or demand to help balance the system. Flexitricity monitors the BM round the clock from its 24/7 control room, and remotely alters the charge and discharge profile of the Thurcroft battery.

The project will also trade the battery in the wholesale markets and tender for frequency response services to help meet the nation’s energy needs and optimise revenue for the site. Flexitricity took the asset into National Grid ESO’s new Dynamic Containment frequency response service on day one and has been securing daily contracts at high value ever since.

The UK now boasts around 1GW installed battery storage capacity and the market needs further growth to facilitate a net zero energy system.

Andy Lowe, Director at Flexitricity, said:

“Flexibility is a hugely important part of decarbonising the grid and batteries are an excellent source of flexibility. Investors are getting comfortable with the business case for energy storage and it’s great this year to be seeing a number of large batteries coming onto the system, providing more of the rapid response flexibility National Grid ESO needs to maintain system stability.

“In today’s markets, maximising value for battery assets requires a huge amount of expertise and agility. We have a proven track record here, and we’re delighted that Gresham House has entrusted us to optimize a number of their sites, including the flagship Thurcroft battery.

“I’m glad to say we’re off to a great start and have been able to optimise revenue for the battery across a range of markets, including securing high prices in the first ever tender round of the newly launched Dynamic Containment service.”

Ben Guest, Managing Director at Gresham House, said:

“We have plans to grow our energy storage portfolio, aiming for over 350MW in operational assets by the end of 2020. Great Britain needs at least 10GW in the next few years to enable the orderly transition to a renewables-led electricity market.

In turn, we aim to contribute meaningfully to the UK’s 2050 net zero ambitions, while achieving strong returns for our investors.

We divide our storage projects between a range of optimisation partners and decided to entrust Flexitricity with Thurcroft having worked with them successfully on a previous project.”

ENDS


NOTES TO EDITORS:

About Flexitricity

Flexitricity created and now operates the first, largest and most advanced demand response portfolio in GB and has unsurpassed knowledge of the market and its requirements.

Headquartered in Edinburgh, Flexitricity partners with businesses throughout Great Britain to provide reserve electricity to National Grid. The word “Flexitricity” means “Flexible Electricity”. The company looks for flexibility in electricity consumption and generation, creating revenue for energy users and generators as well as reducing national CO2 emissions and helping to secure energy supplies.

Their team is fully engaged at industry and regulatory level and has a track record that demonstrates innovation and delivery success.

Flexitricity is a wholly owned portfolio company of Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners, a specialist investment manager focused exclusively on lower carbon and renewable energy infrastructure investment and operational asset management in the U.S., U.K. and Australia.

About Gresham House and Gresham House Energy Storage Fund

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund plc owns a portfolio of utility-scale operational energy storage systems (known as ESS) located in Great Britain. The portfolio has a total capacity of 265MW. The Company is managed by Gresham House Asset Management Limited under the leadership of Ben Guest. The Company was admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange (Specialist Fund Segment) on 13 November 2018 having raised £100.0 million of gross proceeds from investors. Including issuance under the Placing Programme, it has now raised a total of approximately £238.0 million of gross proceeds from investors.

The Gresham House New Energy team has a proven track record in developing and operating energy storage and other renewable assets having developed 224MW of Energy Storage Systems and approximately 290MW of predominantly ground-mounted solar projects. Gresham House Asset Management Limited currently manages 207MW of solar and wind energy projects.

Gresham House Asset Management Limited is the FCA authorised operating business of Gresham House plc, a London Stock Exchange quoted specialist alternative asset manager. Gresham House is committed to operating responsibly and sustainably, taking the long view in delivering sustainable investment solutions.

CONTACTS

Flexitricity - Ross Henderson / ross@mediazoo.tv / +44 (0) 141 471 8399

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund - KL Communications / +44 (0) 203 995 6673

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