World’s First Offshore Wind Battery Now Installed

Equinor and Masdar have installed the Batwind battery system at the Hywind Scotland floating wind farm, which represents the first ever battery for offshore wind.

Electricity produced at Hywind Scotland will be transported via cables to the onshore substation in Peterhead, Scotland, where the 1MW batteries are placed and connected to the grid.

The project partners’ objective is to teach Batwind when to hold back and store electricity and when to send power to the grid, thus increasing the value of the power.

The battery’s algorithms are based on multiple data sources including weather forecasts, market prices, maintenance schedules, consumption patterns and grid services, Equinor said.

According to Sebastian Bringsvaerd, Development Manager for Hywind and Batwind, the storage value is not necessarily in the amount of energy that can be stored, but how to optimize, control and offer smarter energy solutions.

“The variability of renewable energy can to a certain extent be managed by the grid. But to make renewable energy more competitive and integrate even more renewables to the grid, we will need to find new, smart solutions for energy storage to provide firm power. How to do this in a smart and value creating way is what we are aiming to learn from Batwind,” said Bringsvaerd.

“Digitalisation is a key driver here. The more we feed Batwind’s power management system with data, the smarter it gets. In addition, Batwind can be utilised for other renewable energy sources including solar and onshore wind. We believe this will expand the market for all renewable energy sources.”

The storage solution works, in many respects, like an energy warehouse, Equinor said, adding that the companies will test where to build the warehouse, how big it should be and how to run the logistics.

Equinor owns a 75% stake in the 30MW Hywind Scotland, with Masdar holding the remaining 25%.

At the beginning of this year, the two companies signed an agreement to collaboratively analyze data from the Batwind battery system.