Festival Hydro hosts grand opening ceremony for Canada’s largest battery storage facility
Dec. 13, 2017- It’s not up and running yet, but by the time everyone gets back from holidays, the four lithium ion battery cell arrays, now housed in what will be Canada’s largest battery storage facility, will be ready to take the pressure off Stratford’s power grid in the city’s industrial south end.
During a grand opening ceremony at the battery storage facility located in the Wright Business Park next to the $15.8 million transformer station built by Festival Hydro in 2013, representatives from Festival Hydro, its partners and the city were on hand to complete the official ribbon cutting and mark the beginning of a new age of power storage in Stratford.
“They’re going through final commissioning and we’re hoping to have this facility connected to the grid in the month of December,” said Festival Hydro CEO Ysni Semsedini after the ribbon cutting. “…As you can see there are over 300 racks with seven batteries on each, adding up to the 8.8 Megawatt, 40.8 Megawatt-hour installation.”
Through a partnership with Powin Energy -- the facility’s principal investor -- Hecate Energy, Saturn Power and Ellis Don Construction, Festival Hydro’s battery storage project is part of the Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator’s (IESO) long term energy plan to provide key ancillary supports like voltage control and the reduction of demand on Ontario power companies’ central generation systems during peak hours through new energy storage technologies.
“Over the next couple of weeks we’ll be doing final commissioning to get this site ready to be grid integrated, and after that we’ll flip it on and we’ll be working with the IESO to figure out the running conditions they want to see within the system – some of it will be for voltage support or frequency stability, or they may do it for lower peak,” Semsedini said.
“We’ll use this site in a whole bunch of different variations. That was the whole purpose of the IESO issuing the contract, was to be able to see how we can use this battery storage within the overall system. This test facility is… one of the first large-scale battery storage projects to go live in Ontario.”
Prior to the ribbon cutting, Stratford Mayor Dan Mathieson toted Powin Energy’s $25 million investment into the city’s battery storage facility as yet another example of how Stratford is at the forefront of technological advancement.
“Whether it’s autonomous vehicles, vehicle manufacturing with this industrial park, the RBC’s data centre just a short kilometer away… or it’s this very battery storage facility at 8.8 Megawatts of power, it says that Stratford is on the right trajectory… We pride ourselves on being a city of the future, a city of innovation, and a city that knows that things are changing in communities, and that we need to be on the forefront,” Mathieson said.
“And that’s what makes the difference between this city of 32,000 and so many other communities across this province and this nation. I think the future is very bright for this community.”
To learn how Stratford’s battery storage facility will improve voltage stability and reduce demand on Festival Hydro’s central generation system, click here. (http://www.stratfordbeaconherald.com/2017/06/16/canadas-largest-battery-storage-facility-to-be-built-in-stratford)