DC-Coupled Utility-Scale Solar Plus Storage leads to higher round-trip efficiencies and lower cost of integration with existing PV arrays and at the same time, opens up new revenue streams not possible with traditional AC-coupled storage.
Maximize Production and Revenues of Utility-Scale Solar with DC-Coupled Energy Storage
Contributed by | Dynapower
The addition of energy storage to an existing or new utility-scale PV installation allows system owners and operators the opportunity to capture additional revenues. Traditional storage plus solar applications have involved the coupling of independent storage and PV inverters at an AC bus or the use of multi-input hybrid inverters. An alternative approach – coupling energy storage to PV arrays with a DC-to-DC converter – can help maximize production and profits for existing and new utility-scale installations. DC-Coupled Utility-Scale Solar Plus Storage leads to higher round-trip efficiencies and lower cost of integration with existing PV arrays and at the same time, opens up new revenue streams not possible with traditional AC-coupled storage, including clipping recapture and low voltage harvesting, while being eligible for valuable tax incentives.
BENEFITS OF DC-COUPLED UTILITY-SCALE SOLAR PLUS STORAGE
- Lower Installation and Regulatory Costs than AC-Coupled
- Highest Efficiency
- Increased Project Revenues Through Clipping Recapture
- No Interconnection Study Needed
- Qualifies for Valuable Tax Credits
VALUE STREAMS OF DC-COUPLED UTILITY-SCALE SOLAR PLUS STORAGE
- Clipping Recapture — Maximize Value of PV Generated Energy
- Curtailment & Outage — Continuous Uptime
- Low Voltage Harvesting — Make Money on the Edges
- Capacity Firming — Turn Solar Energy into a Dispatchable Asset
- Energy Time Shifting — Utilize Generated PV Energy When Its Value is Highest
- Ramp Rate Control+ — Modulate Power for Continuous Grid Connection
DC-COUPLED SYSTEM DESIGN
Figure 1 Illustrates the basic design of a DC-coupled system. In this set-up the storage ties into the system behind the existing PV inverter and combines in parallel with existing PV strings at a recombiner. Depending on the size of the inverter and the use cases, designers can install multiple DC-DC converters in parallel on the DC PV bus.
To learn more about the value of a DC-to-DC Converter for Solar Plus Storage applications, watch our prerecorded webinar
The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of AltEnergyMag
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