Energy Storage

Enel unit details largest New York City storage system

A unit of Enel Group recently offered details on the largest battery storage system in New York City, which it developed in partnership with Related Companies, a New York real estate firm.

Enel X, the Italian energy company’s advanced energy services business unit, installed the 4.8 MW, 16.4 MWh battery in June at Related Companies’ Gateway Center in the East New York neighborhood of New York City borough of Brooklyn. The front-of-the-meter battery storage system sells power to New York utility Consolidated Edison during times of peak demand. To date, the Gateway battery has delivered over 100 MWh of energy to the local grid during periods of peak demand.

Enel X leases the space for the battery from Related Companies at the firm’s Gateway shopping center. Con Ed dispatches the battery as part of its Brooklyn-Queens Neighborhood Program, which is designed to defer capital investments by using non-wires alternatives such as batteries.

The battery also generates revenues by providing demand response and other grid services, but Enel did not provide details on those services.

“New York is a complex, densely populated market in continuous growth, which requires innovative technologies to address evolving energy challenges,” Francesco Venturini, head of Enel X, said in a statement.

The Gateway battery system will help both New York City and New York State meet their energy storage targets. A year ago, the New York Public Service Commission approved a 3,000 MW by 2030 energy storage target for the state, and in September 2016, New York City set an energy storage goal of 100 MWh by 2020.

Progress toward meeting New York City’s goal has been slow, however, because of the high cost of real estate, high population density, and strict fire safety rules.

The Gateway lithium-ion battery is designed to meet the stringent safety requirements of the New York City Fire Department and is a best-in-class containerized solution for battery storage systems, Enel X said.

New York City’s first lithium-ion battery storage system was installed in April 2017, at the Marcus Garvey affordable housing complex in East New York by Demand Energy, a subsidiary of Enel Green Power North America. Enel X has since taken over the project from its affiliate. The behind-the-meter battery was installed outside to allay concerns about fire safety. The 300-kW, 1.2-MWh battery is part of a system that also includes a 400-kW solar system and 400-kW fuel cell.

While the Gateway project is for now the largest battery storage project in New York City, it is soon to be eclipsed. In October, the New York Public Service Commission approved LS Power's proposed 316-MW battery energy storage project at the Ravenswood power plant in Long Island City in the borough of Queens. The battery system will be capable of supplying power for up to eight hours.

LS Power plans to begin selling energy from the battery system into the New York Independent System Operator system in 2022. The developer also has submitted a bid into Con Ed’s solicitation for 300 MW/1,200 MWh of battery energy storage for delivery by year-end 2022.

The Ravenswood batteries are replacing 16 combustion turbines that are about 50 years old.