Integration of renewable energy storage into wind power plants in France
Abstract: One of the main challenges with increasing renewable energy share in electricity distribution networks is the regulation of power quality and reliability due to the intermittent nature of certain renewable energy resources. In particular, in the cases of increased share of wind and solar power generation systems in electricity networks. This thesis aimed to investigate the techno-economic feasibility for developing Energy Storage Solutions for power generation systems based on renewable energy. It is the European direction to drive energy sector towards zero-carbon policy that should only be achieved through integration of renewable power generation. The increased number of wind and solar power plants will lead to congestion and create needs for an adapted decentralized power system. This development increases the importance of balancing services, in particular the frequency regulation services, and thus introduces the need for storage solutions and hybrid systems. The main challenge addressed in this thesis is how the balancing component assets such as storage solutions are going to be feasible for renewable energy power producers in French Electricity System. In this work, at Boralex, a French Renewable Energy Power generation company in France, a system model has been developed to evaluate the economic potential of participating in energy storage market for renewable power producers in French electricity market while adhering to the current energy policies. Using the model, economic analysis of storage solutions were performed for few Boralex, generation assets of wind, solar and hybrid power generation. According to the case study results, it is shown that, optimizing the grid connection of a 12 MW wind power plant(conditions specific to a particular plant taken for the case study) by adding a 2 MW Lithium Ion battery to perform balancing and regulation services can bring the storage project an IRR of 8% over 10 years. The study highlights the need to avoid the grid connection fee and to combine other service options such as the frequency regulation (FCR) and the Capacity Mechanism (CM) to make battery storage viable according to French policies. A government incentive program for capacity holders called Long Term Tender (LTT), which provides stable revenue on the Capacity Mechanism for 7 years, has been identified as the key driver of profitability for storage solutions and enables the IRR of 8% to be achieved. This study also reveals that for future energy systems, the decreasing trend in capital costs of battery installations will enable French renewable power producers to develop economically profitable storage solutions without the support from the Long Term Tender. The decrease of 35% in battery capital costs brings an IRR of 8% for similar storage projects providing frequency regulations and balancing services without the support from the Long Term Tender.
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