Europe’s biggest battery has begun operating near Hull. The generator, which can store enough energy to power 300,000 households for two hours, went online in Pillswood, Cottingham, on Monday.
As the UK prepares for a possible energy shortage this winter, it was announced that the launch of this new product had been brought forward four months.
The facility was developed by North Yorkshire renewable power firm Harmony Energy, which uses Tesla technology.
When renewable resources like wind and solar farms generate electricity, the battery energy storage system stores it for later use. This is helpful for balancing the power grid demand and supply of electricity.
Pillswood is capable of storing 196 MWh energy in a single cycle.
The facility will be located next to a National Grid substation, which will help power Dogger Bank, the world’s largest offshore wind farm. The plant is set to open later this decade in the North Sea.
Peter Kavanagh, the director of Harmony Energy, said: “Battery energy storage systems are essential to unlocking the full potential of renewable energy in the UK. We hope that this particular project will put Yorkshire on the map as a leader in green energy solutions.”
These projects are not supported by public funds and will play an important role in contributing to the Net Zero transition, as well as maintaining security for the UK’s future energy supply.
Tesla’s AI software will be used to match energy supply with demand. The system was originally scheduled to go live in two stages by December 2022 and March 2023, but it is now expected to be switched on in a single stage.
Harmony Energy brought its launch forward to help National Grid provide stable and reliable power. The challenging winter period can be tough on local power grids, so we’re stepping in to support them as much as possible.
With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the United Kingdom has already seen gas supply disruption and a warning from Ofgem about major energy shortages this winter.