Maintaining a grid balance and optimal load division is one of the main challenges of modern energy systems. Fossil-fuel powered generations, which were traditionally used to balance the energy production, do not provide the required level of precision anymore. High penetration of the renewable energy sources sets new challenges that require energy systems to respond faster, be more flexible but at the same time, more reliable.
Conventional generators need several minutes to ramp up or down the power output in order to balance the grid. However, energy demand and supply change from second to second creating imbalances and adversely affecting the grid. Pumped-storage hydroelectric power stations respond faster, but are too expensive to install and take too much space, thus preventing it from becoming a prevailing grid-balancing method.
Flywheel energy storages “Kinetic” are capable of an instant respond to any imbalances, correcting both small intraminute and large intraday fluctuations within milliseconds, providing time for a conventional generator to gradually adjust its power output. Apart from providing faster, more accurate and efficient balancing services, “Kinetic” has one of the lowest setup costs on the market and occupies a relatively small space. Moreover, several energy storage units could be connected together to form a plant with almost any energy storage capacity. “Kinetic” energy plants provide grid balancing services (and frequency/voltage regulation) on a city- or even region-wide scale, while taking less space and being cheaper to install than other competitors’ devices.
Moreover, “Kinetic” not only improves the speed and accuracy of the grid balancing, but also promotes more efficient usage of energy resources. Generators that operate at an optimal level throughout a day with no sudden (and costly) fluctuations in energy production, not only consume less fuel, but also wear out slower and require less maintenance.