Endesa gets the green light for a pioneering system for large scale energy storage with electric car batteries

Published on Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Endesa, in its bid for research into new energy storage systems with the time horizon of a new decarbonised model, has implemented development of a pioneering system in Europe on a large scale by means of recycling of “second life” electrical vehicle batteries”.

The solution, based on grouping of more than 90 interconnected batteries with controlled electronics and installed power, will have a power of up to 4 MW, with a maximum stored energy of 1.7 MWh.

The storage system will be located in Endesa’s thermal power station in Melilla, a city in which, since it is an electrical system isolated from the electrical network (like an island), measures to improve and guarantee the safety of supply are essential.

The solution could guarantee energy supply of the autonomous city, which has 86,120 inhabitants for 15 minutes or even longer, if loads lower than 4 MW are applied. Furthermore, the new Endesa project represents a more economic alternative to that represented by stationary power storage batteries and especially, more sustainable application, because it recycles batteries already used previously in electrical vehicles, thereby giving batteries a second lifetime and resolving their recycling.

The project, which is in the technological validation and evaluation of financial viability phase, will be prepared technologically for implementation before next summer and is a clear example of circular economy. First, it will significantly contribute to resolve imbalances in loss of generation in the electrical system and improved quality of supply. Second, it will lengthen the life of worn-out batteries already used in electrical vehicles with a lifetime of approximately six years, depending on their use. Given the forecasts that a robust increase in the fleet of electrified vehicles will occur in the next few years, an increase in both supply and a significant reduction in the cost of “second life” batteries is also expected.

Thermal power station in Melilla

This pilot project developed by Endesa counts on collaboration with the car manufacturer Nissan and will be used in the 78 “battery packs” (see Figure attached) for its Nissan LEAF model, for which 354,000 units have already been sold.

Pioneers in storage systems

Endesa is pioneer in the research and development of large-scale energy storage projects, within the scope of its bid for an emission-free energy model in 2050. Put simply, the company’s strategy involves growth in renewable energies, electrification of demand, digitalisation of energy efficiency and a gradual reduction in traditional generation systems and energy storage systems.

Among the energy storage projects developed by Endesa in the last year, the thermal power station in Carboneras (Almería) is notable. At the moment this is the largest in Spain and is based on lithium ion batteries of 20 MW power and 11.7 MWh production capacity. Another similar station is planned for the company’s thermal power station in As Pontes (A Coruña) and which is currently under consideration.

We must add the Store project to these initiatives; the first developed by Endesa and based on batteries located in different Canary Islands, which has successfully revealed the operation and possibility of strengthening the network in terms of isolated electrical systems.

Beyond energy storage systems with batteries, Endesa also has storage systems based on pumps in several hydroelectric power stations and takes part in the hydrowind facility of Gorona del Viento on the Canary Island El Hierro.

 For further information on Endesa’s energy storage projects: