Connected Energy, Hethel Engineering Centre (Case Study 2)
Connected Energy is a world leading SME innovator of energy storage systems that utilise second life electric vehicle batteries. The company’s E-STOR Battery Energy Storage System has a modular and scalable design that can be adapted to control any electric vehicle battery pack. E-STOR technologies enable intensive energy users to benefit from more cost effective, flexible, and sustainable energy storage.
With a Head Office in Newcastle and a Research and Development Facility in Hethel, Norfolk, Connected Energy’s team of 20 is made up of expert engineers from the Renewable Energy and automotive sectors. Connected Energy’s portfolio of projects in operation and development range from 90kWh to 14.4MWh and can be found around the UK and Europe.
Hethel Engineering Centre (HEC) is a business park with a community of tenants representing a vast range of engineering and manufacturing industries, from automotive to medical to energy. As a consequence of this cluster of businesses working daily on innovative and technical designs, HEC’s power usage is high, meaning innovative approaches to power usage on site are of significant importance.
As Connected Energy develop more powerful battery storage systems, an increased electricity capacity at HEC would be required to install and operate them. This is similar to a problem that many companies face when upgrading energy intensive machinery or are looking at charging infrastructure for their fleet electrification. The typical solution would be to look at increasing the connection size, which can require installing new, costly transformers and switchboards.
Connected Energy successfully installed two of our 300 kW E-STOR battery storage systems at the HEC without having to increase the connection. As the total power for these systems is larger than our connection, we operate them in a synchronised mode. For example, when one system requests to charge or discharge at a power higher than the limit of our site, the other system will respond by providing either additional power or soaking up surplus energy. By passing energy between the batteries, we efficiently use the energy that has been imported to the site.
Furthermore, monitoring of the whole sites energy usages and solar generation has allowed Connected Energy to ensure any surplus renewable generation is stored and used at the site. During February 2021, a total of 2.5 MWh of energy was discharged from the battery storage systems with 100% of this energy being reused on site. By continuing to use this method of recycling the stored energy, we expect to save up to £6,000 in 2021.
After demonstrating these operating modes, Connected Energy can provide HEC a low carbon battery storage solution that can actively manage any import connection constraints or capture any surplus renewable generation. By fully utilising the renewable energy generated Connected Energy are helping to enable future EV charging infrastructure to be deployed.