Sumitomo Introduces Battery System

Japan’s Sumitomo Electric Industries in July began operation of a new power generation and megawatt-class storage system at its Yokohama Works site. The system uses one of the world’s largest redox flow batteries and 28 concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) units with a total power generation capacity of up to 200 kW. Sumitomo is developing the system with other Japanese firms Nissin Electric, Sumitomo Densetsu, and Meidensha.

According to the company, using a 1-MW x 5-hour redox flow battery, the system can store power from electricity generators during the night by connecting to external commercial power networks. The system is also equipped with an energy management system, which monitors the amount of CPV-generated electric power, battery storage, and power consumption, and stores the data in a central server.

5. A solar battery. A new power generation and megawatt-class storage system that began operating at Sumitomo’s Yokohama Works site in Japan this July uses one of the world’s largest redox flow batteries and 28 concentrated photovoltaic units. It has a total generation capacity of up to 200 kW. This schematic illustrates how the technology works. Courtesy: Sumitomo

The system essentially “levels power consumption, enables stable power supply based on plans by combining a redox flow battery with solar power generators, controls the amount of electric power discharged from the battery according to electric loads, and balances fluctuations in solar power generation by charging/discharging the battery,” Sumitomo said.

Next, the company plans to start a demonstration test of a factory energy management system, which combines the existing gas engine power generators with the redox flow battery and CPV units in the Yokohama Works. That project will be part of a “first attempt” in the Yokohama Smart City project. Ultimately, the company aims for commercialization of the systems next year.

Sonal Patel is POWER’s senior writer.