Lux Research says AutoDR cheapest for tackling renewables intermittency
Oct 9, 2012 - Lux Research has identified automated demand response (AutoDR) as the cheapest option for managing renewable energy intermittency.
Grid operators will also need to use natural gas generation and energy storage for at least 0.5% of the annual power output to make their grids more flexible as renewable resources such as wind and solar move towards grid penetration of 30% or more, the research firm said today.
According to Lux's analysis, AutoDR has the lowest levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) of all technologies to manage intermittency, at USD 0.016 (EUR 0.012) per kWh. It, however, can manage only up to 2% of the peak generation at renewables penetration of 30%.
The firm said that electricity produced from natural gas can tackle substantial, long-term supply fluctuations better than AutoDR, in spite of its LCOE being significantly higher. The attractiveness of this option, however, is diminished by gas price volatility.
The growing adoption of wind and solar is fuelling demand for energy storage, Lux further says. It estimates that for a typical grid with 1 GW of peak demand and annual consumption of 168 GWh, the storage capacity needed will be of 59 MWh, 1,323 MWh, 1,751 MWh at 10%, 30% and 50% renewables, respectively.