As the Baltic States prepare to dramatically increase renewable energy production and generate up to 100 per cent of electricity from renewable energy sources by 2050, Japanese energy company TEPCO Power Grid analysed technical measures and economic considerations that need to be tackled.
The study shows that the development of the Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) is the best way for Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to ensure smooth and reliable operation of their power systems when up to 100 per cent electricity is generated from renewable energy sources. Specifically, 240 megawatts (MW) capacity of the grid forming type battery systems will countermeasure the lack of inertia associated with wind and solar generation. Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian transmission system operators, Litgrid, Augstspriegumatī tīkls and Elering, signed a Joint Study Agreement with TEPCO Power Grid in May 2020.
“The changes in the electricity generation structure are ongoing,” said Gatis Junghāns, Member of AST Management Board. “The electricity production from fossil fuel power plants are decreasing gradually with replacing of wind and solar power plants. The mentioned process should be continued, to meet the goal of zero emission. In order to not reduce power system stability with a high proportion of wind and solar power plants, the precise planning of power system is essential, as well as the implementation of technical solutions to ensure the stability of the power system are necessary.”
In addition, he reminded that in 2025 the Baltic States will be synchronised with the power system of Continental Europe and the Baltic States will be obliged to provide frequency regulation in Baltic power systems.
“Consequently, the Baltic States should find solutions to provide mentioned services,” Mr Junghāns continued. “AST considers that battery energy storage systems are the most technically and economically optimal technology that AST should use for stable and reliable synchronisation with Continental Europe. And conclusions from TEPCO study is one more evidence that BESS is the recommended technology to solve these challenges.”
In particular, TEPCO investigated the synthetic inertia and grid forming control technology for High Voltage Direct Current links, new BESSs and renewable energy generation units such as wind and solar. The introduction of BESS with the synthetic inertial response is significant for solving the technical challenges to achieve the ambitious national strategies for expanding renewable energy by the Baltic States. The solution proposed in the study would help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and contribute to the realisation of a low-carbon society. The socioeconomic analysis also shows positive results due to environmental impact and total benefits outweigh incurred investment and operational costs.