In today’s world, energy storage is a necessary component to ensure a reliable (and sustainable) power supply. Battery energy storage systems, also known as BESS, offer a solution to this. Ultimately, they revolutionise the way we generate, store and distribute electricity.
But what exactly are battery energy storage systems, and how do they work? That’s what we’ll be exploring in this blog post. Read on to learn more about battery energy storage systems, including what they are, their main applications, and how battery storage works.
What is a Battery Energy Storage System?
Before we explore exactly how a battery energy storage system works, let’s define what it is. Essentially, battery energy storage systems store energy for later use. It is an advanced solution that allows energy to be stored in several ways to be used at a later date.
Battery energy storage systems have numerous benefits, providing grid stabilisation by balancing supply and demand. They also reduce the impact of fluctuations in renewable energy generation and hugely enhance grid reliability.
BESS can serve as backup power during power outages or fluctuations due to weather, meaning that you can achieve an uninterrupted power supply. Battery systems are vital for business, utility and home energy for a steady power flow – it’s the future of any energy strategy.
Why Are Battery Energy Storage Systems Needed?
So, why are battery energy storage technologies needed, and what are their applications? BESS plays an important role in improving the reliability, efficiency and sustainability of our energy systems, storing excess energy during times of low demand or high generation and allowing the stored energy to be used in times of low generation or high energy consumption.
Battery storage systems can be used in various ways, not just for emergency backup purposes. The exact application can vary depending on where it’s being used – a business or a home.
Commercial applications may include load shifting – allowing businesses to move their energy consumption from one time to another to reduce the cost of energy.
Peak shaving is another application, or managing energy demand to avoid sudden spikes in energy consumption.
Flexibility is a prominent reason why BESS is used in commercial environments. It reduces the grid demand at critical times without it impacting energy consumption. This makes it easier to save energy costs.
Microgrids use batteries during their processes too. This is because electricity grids need storage to allow them to disconnect from the main grid when necessary.
How Exactly Does a Battery Energy Storage System Work?
Energy storage units contain several components:
- Onboard sensors
- One (or more) battery modules
- Control components
The onboard sensors can not only ensure that the operation remains safe, but allows for remote monitoring. This can help to look out for battery module failure and ensure that the operating temperatures are maintained well. Onboard sensors can also report the data usage to the relevant bodies.
Having more than one battery module can prevent the system from going down if a battery module fails – and can be swapped quickly and easily with no downtime.
Finally, the control components streamline the entire operation, ensuring that they work however they are required to without much intervention. For example, you can configure the batteries to charge automatically or store energy in the event of an outage.