Beacon Power Awarded $2 Million to Support Deployment of Flywheel Plant in New York

http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/beacon-power-awarded-2-million,856701.shtml
TYNGSBORO, Mass. - (Business Wire) Beacon Power Corporation (Nasdaq:
BCON), a company that designs and develops advanced products and services to support more stable, reliable and efficient electricity grid operation, announced that it has been selected by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) for a project award valued at $2 million, subject to negotiations for the project contract. The award would provide partial funding for 1 megawatt (MW) of flywheel energy storage in Stephentown, New York the first of 20 MW that Beacon expects to build and operate on the site.
Under the anticipated contract, the NYSERDA funding will partially pay for the design, site preparation, flywheel production, installation, system commissioning, data monitoring and analysis of a 1 MW Smart Energy Matrix that would provide frequency regulation services. As part of the same award, NYSERDA is also providing partial funding for certain interconnection components of the 20 MW frequency regulation plant that Beacon plans to construct on the Stephentown site.
The 1 MW Smart Energy Matrix will be initially connected to a power line owned by NYSEG, a major state utility. A system impact study for the 1 MW project has been successfully completed, and Beacon has entered into an interconnection agreement with NYSEG. When the balance of the 20 MW plant is constructed, the 1 MW system will be switched over and the entire facility will connect to a transmission line owned by National Grid.
Beacon will receive the funding from NYSERDA in stages that will be tied to construction milestones and system performance parameters. Once built and connected, the 1 MW system will be capable of receiving a commercial regulation control signal from New York ISO (NYISO), and earning revenue by bidding into the NYISO regulation market. NYISO received approval last month from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for what is considered to be the most favorable tariff for grid-scale energy storage among any of the open-market grid regions. In addition, NYISO has already completed the related technical implementation of software and control systems.
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On Thu, 11 Jun 2009 15:19:45 +0000, Bill Ghrist wrote:

million,856701.shtml
I hope one of the first objectives is to learn the difference between energy and power.

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Bill Ward wrote:

Basically they need to teach that to the people who write their press releases. The 20 MW apparently indicates the max output power that can be supplied on demand. This can be supplied for fifteen minutes, so the (available) stored energy is 5 MWh according to the specs on their web site http://www.beaconpower.com/files/SEM_20MW.pdf
Specifications
Output power 20 MW max. continuous for 15 minutes
Power range 40 MW (20 MW up or down)
Rated output energy 5 MWh @ 20 MW
Response time <4 seconds (to rated power)
Input/output voltage 480 VAC, 3-phase, 50/60 Hz
Flywheel design life 20 years
Plant footprint 3.5 acres. (approx.)
This particular application is intended to provide a short term alternative to the use of spinning reserve for load fluctuations. As such it could also compensate for short term fluctuations in solar or wind generation, but it would not mitigate the need for full backup for longer term (hours to days) unavailability of sun or wind. It would however mean that less of that backup generation would need to be available as spinning reserve.
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http://www.beaconpower.com/files/SEM_20MW.pdf

It's good in that it can be kept spinning with green power but they don't give any indication as to the magnitude of that loss or how it could be evaluated for ROI.
If the flywheel is constantly "charging/discharging" it won't be such a big deal.
If it must be kept spinning for weeks and weeks between a single hour of activity then it isn't such a great deal.
In any event the utility doesn't want to screw around with batteries.
Bret Cahill
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Bret Cahill wrote:

Costs are addressed in this report: Cost Comparison for a 20 MW Flywheel-based Frequency Regulation Power Plant http://www.beaconpower.com/files/KEMA_Report_Cost_Comparisons_Nov%202007.pdf

Frequency regulation is an on-going activity. Time between changes is more likely to be measured in seconds or minutes than in hours or days.

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2 Mil wouldn't BUY much of this. It's just for a feasability study, right?
What do they use/did they use before? Don't they just sync up the turbines themselves?
Is this needed because of supplies coming from various and not too predictable sources?
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Like wind turbines on a calm day or solar panels ona cloudy day.
Long live steam!
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