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Case Study: Small Design Recommendation Yields Real Project Savings



The most exciting part of design engineering is not just making a project technically feasible, conforming to code, or ensuring a project is safe and economical, but adding value to a project – and a customer -- by making the project more safe and more economical.  While running the electrical design for a 100 MW / 400 MWh battery energy storage system (BESS), Flux Energy recommended the battery storage technology manufacturer downsize the over current protection devices (OCPD) to 1200A from 1600A. 


Sounds simple enough, but by downsizing the OCPD, Flux Engineers were able to decrease conductor size as well.  The smaller conductors cost five dollars less per linear foot, and with over 80,000 feet of wire in the BESS field, that simple recommendation brought a confirmed cost savings of $450,000. 


Perhaps $450,000 is a small decrease of around 1% of the total system cost of a multi-million-dollar project [1], but as GTM is predicting steady cost decreases between 6 and 7% per year over the next 5 years [2], that percentage point carries a lot of weight. For the most part, the industry has been relying on decreases in the cost of the lithium-ion batteries themselves to drive overall system cost reductions, but as we've seen with solar, every savings in the balance of system also makes these systems more competitive with traditional fossil fuel resources in more markets.


More over, that cost savings, when applied to the next project will make our EPC partner that much more competitive in winning their scope of work.


This is just another way Flux Energy is bringing value to our customers and energy storage projects.


References:

[1] Cole, Wesley, and A. Will Frazier. 2019. Cost Projections for Utility-Scale Battery Storage.

Golden, CO: National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL/TP-6A20-73222.

https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy19osti/73222.pdf

[2] Fin-Foley, Dan. 2020. Foresight 2020: Energy Storage. MacKenzie Wood Power & Renewables.

© 2019 by Flux Energy Systems.

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