In November 2020 Rent-A-Port Green Energy, announced the start of its construction of a first battery energy storage system (10 MW/20 MWh) at Bastogne scheduled to be completed by mid-2021. “This is an important step, demonstrating that battery energy storage projects provide a fully-fledged alternative to conventional flexible capacity, and are therefore completely viable even without government support,” explains Pierre Bayart, CEO at Rent-A-Port Green Energy.
A battery designed to act as a Swiss Army knife for the electrical grid.
This first project and its underlying funding mechanisms are based on innovative technical and contractual solutions which are the result of long-term development efforts. Partnerships forged with Fluence Energy, one of the leading global energy storage technology and services companies, which will install and maintain the battery storage system, and with Centrica Business Solutions Belgium (formerly REstore), which will dispatch and trade the battery flexibility on the markets, also played a major role in successfully reaching this milestone.
The business model is based on our will to provide a wide range of services with higher added value to the grid operator and market players, thanks both to a longer storage duration than most of the projects in Europe (the battery takes 2 hours to fully charge or discharge, compared to the 30 minute to 1 hour durations that are currently the standard for storage duration in Europe), and also to aggregation of the battery within a pool, combined with decentral production and consumption units.
This aggregated capacity, with the battery as cornerstone, is able to deliver upward and downward balancing capacity to the grid for up to potentially long periods of time. By doing so, battery energy storage can offer a total alternative to thermal power plants, not only as a production unit (by providing energy in periods with low renewable generation) but also as balancing service provider (by charging or discharging the energy to compensate for errors in forecasting consumption and renewable volumes), thereby contributing to the perfect, instantaneous and constant balance between offtake and injection that is required for
keeping the lights on.