National distribution network operator (DNO), Western Power Distribution (WPD), has announced that it will install a number of energy storage systems later this year.  

WPD will install five of General Electric’s Durathon 100kWh energy storage systems as part of the Ofgem-funded ‘Project FALCON’ (Flexible Approaches to Low Carbon Optimised Networks). The project will form part of Ofgem’s Low Carbon Network Fund which aims to use the storage systems to help develop a computer-based modelling tool to help identify the best way of investing in the network.

Commenting on the project, Ben Godfrey, innovation and low carbon networks engineers for WPD said: “We selected the Durathon energy storage system because it provides the performance and functionality we need while being small enough to fit into our network’s substations.

“The real-time performance data collected during the trial will help us manage our network more efficiently, which, in the long run, should minimise costs for customers.”

The DNO operator will install the 100kWh systems at high voltage substations in Milton Keynes. “This trial will demonstrate the impact that the Durathon energy storage system can have in a real-world, utility distribution network,” said Prescott Logan, general manager of GE Energy Storage. “It is designed to provide vital data that can be used to enhance utility services and reduce operating expenses — a saving that could ultimately be passed on to customers.”

WPD hopes that the energy storage systems will help improve efficiency through voltage support, improved power quality and electrical noise reduction.