Write a report that analyses one of the current major issues receiving significant attention with regard to sustainability: Is there an economic case for batteries for energy storage?
The concept of energy storage has been emerging across the global as a credible option for supporting the existing electricity network as well as for facilitating effective operations in the electricity market. According to the energy department of Australia, generation as well as utilization of the traditional energy system will lead to incur higher cost. It has been observed that Australia has a sparse population and it has wide range of unexploited resources of renewable energy. In the present situation, it is suitable to adopt alternative energy source such as energy storage in large scale (GIFFORD, 2014). However, the energy storage industry seems to be in an immature state as well as the growth strategy has not been clear yet. This report will focus on identification of the demand for energy storage in Australia (Laird, 2012). Additionally, this paper will discuss the opportunity for commercial production for meeting demand.
Energy Storage Sector of Australia with Reference to Other Nations
Electricity supply has been segmented into four principal phases: generation, transmission, circulation and retailing. Though it has been observed that the base of renewable energy such as solar, hydro and wind is growing in Australia, the majority of the power is sourced by burning the fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas and coal in the traditional power stations which are operating in large scale. It must be noted that these generators as well as its fuel are normally found far from the place where the energy is consumed. Consequently it becomes capital intensive procedure for transmitting the electricity across the long distance and delivering electricity to the substation which are situated near the area of demand and consumption. The small scale networks for distributing electricity to the consumers, supply low voltage power from the substations. It must be noted that the electrical energy is note stored within the network. Energy is generated through the movement of electrons in the current and whenever the electric appliance is switched on the power is spontaneously transmitted to it. In the same way, when the generator is off, the current is ceased immediately (Marchment Hill Consulting, 2012).
In Australia, energy storage is widely appreciated and the most common mechanism for storing energy is chemical batteries. Storage is developing as a potential mechanism for supporting the current network. It has been estimated that generation, transmission and circulation of the electricity at large scale in real time when it is being consumed is economically more efficient than storing it for future consumption. It was due to the huge upfront cost in order to develop the storage system. However, presently, the renewable energy has changed due to innovation of new technologies. The energy investment group has developed a solar system which has been considered as the largest energy resource of the globe. Australia has already invested more than 2 million Australian dollars (PARKINSON, 2014). On the other hand, it has been observed that the European Countries, United States has invested less than Australia in the energy storage projects.
(Electrical Power Grid Representation: Source: (U.S. Department of Energy, 2012))
Present and Future Situation of Energy Storage Project in Australia
Australian Energy Storage Council was established in 2014 and the major aim of the organization is to facilitate innovation and growth in the energy storage solution in different regions of Australia. The Energy Storage Council in Australia has been focusing on providing a self-governing institute in order to bring all the representatives of the energy storage industry together. The purpose is to establish a strong network among the global energy storage industry for haring information. The connection between the local and global partners of the energy storage will contribute in the growth of the industry. The members of the Australian Energy Storage Council will be significantly benefitted from the policy of the organization. The training programs, industry events and other activities will help the members in involving directly with the other participants of the industry. It is evident that the Australian Energy Storage Council will play a major role in development of the industry standards. Moreover, it has been encouraging the industry for adoption of the best practice to ensure maximum growth (Energystorage.org.au, 2015).
The government of Australia has designed the Solar City program in order to trial the new sustainable model for supplying as well as consumption of energy. It has been already implemented in seven distinct electricity grid connected regions in Australia. The entire operation is managed by the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency by tying up with the state and local governments, business organization and community. Ergon Energy has been supplying electricity in the various regions of Queensland. It has recently conducted trials for storing energy in Magnetic Island and it has used 5kW batteries for the Solar City project. It has been found that the peak demand was declined by 40%. Additionally, it was reported that the level of energy consumption declined to the level of 2007 which leaded to decline in the electricity bill of the consumers. As on 30th June, 2011, green house gas emission of 33,520 tonnes were saved (Marchment Hill Consulting, 2012).
It has been observed that the renewable energy has been proliferating across the globe and Australia is not an exception to that. Awareness regarding to the alternative sources of energy has been rising. New South Wales Coastal shire of Ballina will be transformed into the first place for boasting the solar powered public electric vehicle charging station. Thee renewable Energy Agency of Australia has been already focusing on various systems for storing energy which can be used in future. Use of chemical battery will be helpful in reduction of the usage of the energy as well as consumption of fuel. The government of Australia has been investing for development of new technology and innovation which will help in energy storage system in a cost effective manner. The government of Australia had started its venture of energy storage from 2011 and the project will continue till 2030. Along with this, Australia has focused on adoption of various projects in order to save energy and reducing emission of green house gas (Marchment Hill Consulting, 2012). Research and development team has been emphasizing on facilitating the growth of energy storage industry in Australia.
Procedure of Life Cycle Management Application for Storing Energy
Remote Electricity System and Fringe System
Remote electricity system can be applied for storing energy with the aid of battery as the entire process of the remote system is extensively reliant upon the potential of electricity generation. In the local areas, diesel plant can help in supporting the electricity generation activities. The department of energy storage must shift from the energy saving lifecycle to the renewable energy system. The energy resource department has to emphasize on application of the process of lining the energy transmission network in order to achieve large grid of electricity (PARKINSON, 2014). In case of fringe system, it hangs in the array of an elongated signal network. Additionally, it helps in the maintenance of energy regulation when any problem arises. The shortfalls of the infrastructure are associated with higher cost for strengthening the network (Amin et al., 2012).
It has been estimated the cost of electricity is quite high in Australia. In order to meet the growing demand, the government has been emphasizing on the demand side participation. It has been found that the technological innovation must be integrated in order to decrease the consumption of traditional energy (Marchment Hill Consulting, 2012).
Market participation is considered to be indispensable for boosting up the energy storage industry. The national electricity market has helped in providing significant support for starting the energy storage wholesale market. The national electricity market has established a link with the global energy sector for storing energy (Rentzing, 2014).
In case of energy storage if life cycle management is applied, the demand and supply will be changed in the AC electricity grid. Stability along with the stability of each grid must be noted. The frequency control service will be responsible for providing additional service which is permitted in specifying the market design (Zhang, 2013).
Residential Storage System
In the Australian household, distributed renewable energy generation needs to be adopted for applying the life cycle management for storing energy. Thus the households will be able t avoid huge amount of electricity bills.
Australia will encounter various challenges while applying the life cycle management process for storing energy. The challenges are outlined below:
It has been found that one off the major challenge is to control the interface at the time of the implementation of the lifecycle management process. Till date no standard has been followed in case of utility battery by the vendors (Steinmann, 2014).
The structure of most of electricity industry of Australia is disaggregated. It implies that there is no single party who has the ability for capturing the advantages of storage with establishment of rules along with appropriate market construct. It is expected that it will lead to under investment in the storage industry (Marchment Hill Consulting, 2012).
As energy storage is not a familiar technology for most of engineers and it becomes difficult to manage the AC system. It has been found that the major challenge is it can be misunderstood in terms of future growth and possibilities.
UNEP Life Cycle Management Procedure
Energy Storage for Addressing Major Issues
Various ways are there which can be utilized for storing energy such as chemical energy storage, electrochemical energy storage, mechanical energy, thermal energy, electrical energy etc. Assessing the present issues and scenario in Australia, it can be found that the electrochemical energy storage will be appropriate. It has been found to be the best mechanism for storing energy (Zhang, 2013). Additionally, it has been found that different devices are engaged such as fuel cell, battery etc which helps in the conversion of the chemical energy into electricity. Battery has large capacity for storing energy. Energy density of battery is found to be better compared to other devices.
Additionally, it has been found that voltage efficiency of battery is useful and the ratio of output of the battery is more efficient in comparison to other devices. Electrochemical energy storage device such as battery is allowed for utilization of two different types of battery. Non rechargeable batteries store the energy but it cannot be recharged. On the other hand, chargeable battery has the ability to store the energy and recharge battery which can be reused. The electrode of the rechargeable battery has the ability for preceding the reaction in both the directions (SchloÌˆgl, 2013). Use of electrochemical energy storage system will be helpful in reducing the problems associated with consumption of energy along with the capital investment in order to acquire other resources such as gas, coal etc.
Fuel cell is considered to b one of the important way of storing energy. This electrochemical storage system will be helpful in conversion in the chemical energy into electricity. Australia can get engaged in production of electrical energy by using fuel cell. Various types of fuel cells such as electrolyte, cathode, anode etc contribute in delivery of huge benefits along with energy storage in a cost effective manner.
This report has focused on analyzing the current circumstance of Australia in the energy storage industry. It has been found that alternative resources of energy need to be adopted in Australia for meeting the growing demand. Additionally, it will be helpful if the energy storage is adopted in large scale. The wholesale electricity market must be applied as it will be operating in the Western Australia where the population is greater than 2 million. Use of alternative sources of energy such as solar, wind and water resources instead of the conventional sources will help in reducing the negative impact on the environment.
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