Solar+Storage Virtual Power Plant Coming To Shreveport, Louisiana

June 12th, 2020 by Johnna Crider

Heila Technologies and SimpliPhi Power, an American manufacturer of lithium-ion energy storage systems, have teamed up to deploy “intelligent energy storage+solar systems” in a demonstration project in Shreveport, Louisiana. Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO) is also supporting the project. The project will aggregate distributed energy resources and empower SWEPCO to manage the assets as an optimized fleet.

In other words, solar and energy storage systems at homes and businesses in the region will essentially be combined from the utility’s perspective to manage as if they were one big power plant.

Under this single platform, SWEPCO can use storage and solar systems to fix any power issue, perform peak shaving, and manage the energy supply — all while keeping customers satisfied.

“The Helia Platform is able to sense changes across all connected components and make the system holistically and automatically respond to the changing conditions of the electrical grid,” said Heila’s Senior Engineer and Co-Founder, Jorge Elizondo.

The SimpliPhi and Heila product includes PHI 3.8 kWh batteries, inverters, and a Heila EDGE controller that acts like a Battery Management System and an Energy Management System.

All of the distributed energy resources are aggregated and optimized to form a distributed intelligent network. This can be used by any central controller to control the fleet as a single entity.

PHI batteries will measure and report voltage, currents, and temperatures. They will also perform needed calculations that determine real-time battery state of change, health, and fault detection. Heila can also operate the PHI battery units either connected to the grid or off the grid.

This system will improve grid reliability and security for Shreveport-Bossier’s customers. (Shreveport-Bossier is a common phrase that includes Bossier City, LA. The cities are directly across from one another, separated by the Red River.)

“Building resiliency for utility customers using renewable power generation plus storage will be key as the Southeast United States continues to see an increase in extreme weather events due to the impacts of climate change,” the companies stated in a press release.

“This project will serve as a model for other stakeholders who are interested in the benefits of decentralized energy generation and storage working as a virtual power plant.”

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