Younicos announced on April 18 that it had commissioned a commercial 1-MW/2-MWh lithium-ion battery system in Denver that will serve as a key part of a futuristic solar-plus-storage microgrid – and a smart neighborhood – being tested by Japanese electronics giant Panasonic.
In addition, the project involves a third partner, Xcel Energy, and its subsidiary, Public Service Company of Colorado. Xcel will own the installation and Panasonic will service and operate it.
The microgrid is being deployed at Peña Station NEXT, a 400-acre Panasonic testing ground in the Mile-High City for smart, sustainable technologies and responsive infrastructure.
Panasonic has plans for the test site to grow into a smart neighborhood, with intelligent homes, offices, and businesses – and LED lighting, autonomous cars, smart parking meters, and smart bus stops – all conveniently located near both the commuter rail line and Denver International Airport.
Indeed, according to Panasonic, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock (D) has expressed his desire for the airport and Peña Station to be more than just a transit hub, but rather an ultra-modern connected community that supports citizens and businesses, alike, with smart, sustainable technologies and responsive infrastructure that taps into the real-time analytics made possible by big data and the Internet of Things.
Representing a model for utility and commercial and industrial (C&I) microgrids, the project is anticipated to benefit various stakeholders, as well as the power grid, by providing renewables integration, grid resilience; and multiple grid support and operational services, such as peak demand reduction and frequency regulation.
Panasonic’s Technology and Operations Center, which has an intelligent building energy management system, is serving as the initial anchor load for the microgrid.
As for the system specifications, four Younicos plug-and-play Y.Cubes have been connected to the Xcel Energy power grid, creating a 1-MW battery storage resource enabled by Younicos’ intelligent Y.Q control software.
The system’s multi-mode operating capability makes it possible to derive maximum benefits from the 1.6 MWdc solar PV system located on a nearby carport, along with 259 kWdc of PV on the building’s rooftop.
“The collaboration with Panasonic on this microgrid project has been seamless and productive, resulting in a state-of-the-art microgrid that will anchor this development,” said Younicos CEO Stephen Prince. “Our Y.Cube is ideally suited for hybrid utility-and-C&I use cases like this one – providing energy security, resiliency, and financial returns from stacked grid services.”
“This portfolio microgrid is a smart, resilient, and clean energy resource, not just for Panasonic’s Denver operations hub, but also for the broader Peña Station NEXT development,” said George Karayannis, VP of Panasonic CityNOW. “