Wärtsilä reached substantial completion on a 125-megawatt (MW) / 250-megawatt hour (MWh) energy storage system in Calexico, California, USA, for REV Renewables, to help stabilise and decarbonise the electric grid. The facility, called the LeConte energy storage project, is Wärtsilä’s second largest Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) project to date.

Wärtsilä completed construction just in time to provide grid stability during California’s record-setting September 2022 heat wave. The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) confirmed in their Summer Performance Report for September 2022 that 2,000 MW of energy storage were dispatched to support the grid on September 5th during the most grid-challenged heat wave period, helping California avoid widespread power outages. 

The California Public Utilities Commission approved the LeConte system in early 2022 as part of a plan to build 15,000 MW of new energy storage and demand response resources by 2032 to ensure long-term reliability and meet the state’s Renewables Portfolio Standard. The energy storage system for REV Renewables helps fulfil the resource adequacy obligations of California utilities and supports various ancillary efforts for CAISO.

Located near the California/Mexico border, the LeConte facility is situated at a major junction point for energy producers in the CAISO and San Diego Gas & Electric territories that are importing and exporting energy between the U.S. and Mexico. Moreover, the facility will follow the automatic generation control signal to maintain system frequency and perform peak day operations to relieve congestion on transmission lines from the abundance of solar photovoltaic resources in the area.  

“Battery energy storage is a key component to maintaining reliability and stability of California’s electricity grid,” said Cody Hill, REV Renewables Senior Vice President, Battery Systems. “Wärtsilä worked with us to manage supply chain challenges, to collaborate with local communities and to perform site safety and training to bring this complex energy storage project online.”

REV Renewables is a leader in the development, ownership and operations of energy storage and renewable generation assets and owns the largest deregulated portfolio of energy storage assets in the U.S. This is Wärtsilä’s first agreement with REV Renewables, resulting from more than a decade of combined business development efforts across Wärtsilä North America and Wärtsilä Energy Storage & Optimisation.  

“We’re pleased to be partnering with REV Renewables on our second largest EPC project, which will be instrumental for the state’s decarbonisation goals. Adding flexible generation such as energy storage to Southern California is significant as the area is important for stabilising the supply of electricity on transmission lines between Mexico and California,” said Andrew Tang, Vice President of Energy Storage & Optimisation, Wärtsilä. “This facility will support the continued integration of renewable energy assets on California’s electric grid.”

The project includes Wärtsilä’s GridSolv Quantum, a fully integrated, modular and compact energy storage system, as well as the GEMS Digital Energy Platform, Wärtsilä’s sophisticated energy management system. Wärtsilä’s GEMS Digital Energy Platform provides a critical safety feature by continuously monitoring to pinpoint and isolate any system malfunctions automatically. It will be maintained and optimised with Wärtsilä’s Service+ solution, a suite of comprehensive lifecycle solutions applicable for energy storage systems including scheduled maintenance services and extended warranties.

Source: https://www.wartsila.com/
Image source: Courtesy of Wärtsilä

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