Avista Receives First Storage Units for Energy Storage Project

Avista Receives First Storage Units for Energy Storage Project

Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 12:00pm

CAMPAIGN: Modernizing our Grid

CONTENT: Article

Avista received its first set of Energy Storage units on Dec. 30 as a result of a $3.2 million grant from Washington Governor Jay Inslee and the Washington State Department of Commerce. The installation of the units is the first step in Avista’s research that will help address how to integrate power generated from intermittent renewable sources such as wind and solar into the electrical grid and better ways to improve power system reliability. 

The units were installed at Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. in Pullman, Wash. providing a “real-world” setting to conduct several “use case” scenario tests. For example, even small outages can interrupt SEL manufacturing processes and interrupt production. Battery storage can help address these issues by switching to an alternate energy source, while maintaining the necessary voltage levels. These batteries will store power when it’s abundant, for example when the wind is blowing. The battery power can then be distributed when it’s needed, regardless of wind speed or weather patterns.

Pullman is the ideal location for the Energy Storage Project (ESP) because Avista can build upon the existing $80 million investment of combined Avista and federal matching funds to improve reliability, reduce losses and automate activities that have traditionally been performed manually. As a result of these investments to modernize the grid, customers are experiencing fewer and shorter power outages.

You can read more about the grant and project here.