Jul 24, 2012 - Japanese Sumitomo Electric Industries Ltd (TYO:5802) today said it had kicked off demonstration of a megawatt-class solar power generation and storage system at its Yokohama Works plant in Yokohama City, Japan.
The installation includes 28 concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) units with a generation capacity of 200 kW and a redox flow battery with a capacity of 1 MW x 5 hours. Currently, 15 of the CPV units are operational, with the system to reach its maximum generation capacity by the end of March 2013. The company says this is the largest redox flow battery in the world.
Sumitomo Electric partnered on the development of the project with Nissin Electric Co Ltd (TYO:6641), Sumitomo Densetsu Co Ltd (TYO:1949) and Meidensha Corp (TYO:6508).
In addition to storing electricity generated by the CPV units, the system can also store power provided by utilities during the night as it is connected to external commercial power networks. The installation uses an energy management system (EMS), which measures the amount of solar power generation, battery storage and power usage.
Sumitomo Electric also said it planned to demonstrate a factory energy management system (FEMS) that will control the whole energy flow in the Yokohama Works facility by combining the existing gas engine power generators, the redox flow battery and the CPV units. The demonstration, to be conducted in cooperation with Meidensha, will be the first step in the Yokohama Smart City Project, which is among the Next Generation Energy and Social System Demonstration Projects 2012 led by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, according to the announcement.
Sumitomo Electric is looking to commercialise the EMS systems during the 2013/14 fiscal year and is working on cutting costs and other improvements. The main target customers will be large power users like industrial plants and commercial facilities.
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