APS seeks 106 MW of batteries to pair with large-scale solar


It seems everyone is doing batteries these days. From Massachusetts and New York to California and Hawaii, regulators and utilities are seeing the benefits of battery storage to the grid, particularly where paired with solar.

As the latest in this trend, last week Arizona Public Service (APS) issued a request for proposals for 106 MW of battery storage projects to pair with its existing fleet of large-scale solar projects. The projects will need to be in operation by June 2020, and will be used to shift output from these plants from daytime to evening.

APS notes that the peak demand on its system comes in the evening. While in almost all regions of the United States the highest hour of demand annually comes in the afternoon on hot days, daily electricity demand patterns are different. In states such as Arizona which have significant behind-the-meter solar, the daily peak of net demand on the grid is often pushed into the evening.

Developers seeking to participate in this RFP must register by July 18, and proposals and fees are due on August 31. A final selection will be made on November 7.

APS notes that it already has three grid-scale batteries in operation, as well as another 50 MW battery project which is scheduled to come online in 2021.

This concept of retrofitting existing solar with batteries appears to popular lately. Last week Hawaiian regulators also approved rules to allow the state’s 60,000+ behind-the-meter PV system owners to add batteries to their existing projects without violating their net metering agreements.