Dominion Energy Pilot Project Advances Solar With Storage Technology
POWHATAN, Va. — Dominion Energy successfully completed an energy storage pilot project last week that could extend the reach of solar power in the mid-Atlantic region.
The pilot project was carried out at the Scott Solar facility in Powhatan, which is located about 33 miles directly west of Richmond, Virginia.
The successful completion of the project — Dominion Energy’s third such initiative in the state — is considered a significant step in the development of future energy storage technology.
Utility officials also hope the addition of battery storage at renewable energy sites will aid the state’s transition to a clean energy economy while also improving grid reliability and stability.
As part of the pilot project, three independent battery systems totaling 12 MW were installed at the Scott Solar facility. Combined, the battery array can store solar energy for up to four hours.
The batteries at the Powhatan facility will collect and store power during the peak hours of sunshine and provide four hours of power during peak hours of consumer demand to reduce the load on existing transformers.
Utility officials said that over time the facility will provide valuable information on how well battery technology stores energy generated from solar panels, and how smooth the transition can be made to directing that electricity to the grid.
The batteries were approved by the State Corporation Commission in 2020 and construction on the site began the following year. Due to the pandemic and the supply chain issues that followed on its heels, the new facility didn’t come online until May.
Currently Dominion Energy has about 2,200 MW of solar and renewable energy in its ever-expanding portfolio.
In a statement on its Twitter page, the utility said, “energy storage will play an integral role in our ability to increase renewable generation and improve grid reliability as we work to achieve our net zero goal by 2050.”