Vattenfall Will Purchase Up To 1,000 BMW i3 Batteries For Energy Storage Projects

5 months ago by Mark Kane 9

Battery storage system electrified by BMW i announced at EVS29 in Montreal last year

Vattenfall intends to use batteries produced by BMW in its upcoming energy storage systems.

The Company has announced a supply contract for up to 1,000 units of i3’s 33 kWh packs, which would be 33 MWh total.

BMW i3

The batteries will be purchased new, directly from BMW’s plant in Dingolfing (earlier Vattenfall and BMW also explored second-life projects).

Vattenfall is gearing up for various ESS projects. For example in the Netherlands a 3.2 MW system is planned, while in South Wales, a fairly massive 22 MW operation.

“Vattenfall and the BMW Group have signed a contract for the delivery of up to 1,000 lithium-ion batteries this year. The batteries with a capacity of 33 kilowatt hours (kWh) each are equipped with a BMW-owned battery management system and are also used by the car manufacturer in the BMW i3

Vattenfall will purchase the new batteries from the BMW plant in Dingolfing and use them in all storage projects.”

Gunnar Groebler, Senior Vice President of Vattenfall and Head of Business Area Wind said:

“Energy storage and grid stability are the major topics of the new energy world. We want to use the sites where we generate electricity from renewable energies in order to drive the transformation to a new energy system and to facilitate the integration of renewable energies into the energy system with the storage facilities. The decoupling of production and consumption and the coupling of different consumption sectors are in the focus of our work.”

BMW i3 battery: New or used, it is ready to be put to use for energy storage

Daniel Hustadt, project manager for large batteries at Vattenfall Innovation GmbH said:

“We are pleased that we have found a supplier in BMW, who meets our high safety requirements with the use of the batteries with reliably good quality from German series production”.

Vattenfall ESS projects:

“The first energy storage from the BMW-i3 batteries is being built at the 122 MW onshore wind farm “Princess Alexia” near Amsterdam. With a capacity of 3.2 megawatts (MW), it is Vattenfall’s first large storage project in the Netherlands.

Pending on a final investment decision the largest battery storage will be built at the Vattenfall wind farm Pen y Cymoedd (230 MW) in South Wales – a 22-megawatt storage facility, which will help to support the stability of the country-wide power grid in the UK as part of the so-called EFR (Enhanced Frequency Response) service.

As part of the project “Norddeutsche Energiewende NEW 4.0″, Vattenfall, together with the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (HAW) and the company Nordex, will implement a large battery storage at the future wind farm in Hamburg-Bergedorf. This is a so-called storage control unit made of batteries. It is meant to maintain the security of supply with a feed-in of 100 percent renewable energy. In addition, the battery storage contributes to the improvement of the network quality and the more efficient use of the existing network structure. Other possible applications would be electricity storage in private households. Energy storage solutions are an important part of Vattenfall’s strive to power climate smarter living.”

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9 responses to "Vattenfall Will Purchase Up To 1,000 BMW i3 Batteries For Energy Storage Projects"

  1. Cavaron says:

    Great for BMW its cell supplier and Samsung SDI! Would love to know the final kwh-price of the deal.

  2. BattBug says:

    As i understand , BMW neither makes the cells or the battery management systems.
    How come its in the loop ? What value they add ? , package and plumbing ?

    1. EV1893 says:

      they do have their own BMS: “BMW-owend battery management system”. Also, making a battery pack out of cells is far from simple (thermal management, crash safe housing etc)

    2. franky_b says:

      False, they get only get the cells from Samsung CDI, they build everything else related to the pack and do the assembly.

      It’s one of the only pack that allow cells replacement instead of changing the whole pack.

  3. Mark says:

    The unit for electrical capacity isn’t MW, it should be MWh.

    But what is the purpose of a 3.2 MWh storage on a 122 MW wind park? Isn’t this way too small to do anything useful at all?

  4. Apkungen says:

    Come on! If Vattenfall and insideevs cant learn the difference between MW and MWh, how is the comon person going to learn!?

    1. guyinacar says:

      Yeah. This isn’t entirely wrong, athough the clarity (or perhaps transparency) could be much improved. Electric generation is usually measured in megawatts (MW). A train-sized industrial diesel gen-set (like you’d see near a hospital or datacenter) might be 1.5 megawatt. So run it for an hour and it gives you 1500 kW/h. A nuclear plant might be 1500 MW, or a thousand times more powerful. Those will be constant, so there’s no temporal element to their output rating. But wind is tricky. When it blows a little, you get some power. When it blows a lot, you get the rated output from each turbine, perhaps 2.5 megawatt each, for offshore (about half that rating for onshore). But if it blows too much, each nacelle feathers the blades and brakes the hub (to protect the mechanism in a hurricane, let’s say), and you get zero juice. Actually, it’s slightly negative (industrial controls, heaters, lights, warning beacons, etc). So the farm needs energy storage or diesel backup, in order to provide consistent power. The battery storage should be rated in kW/h to give a more earnest picture here, true. But the system overall (i.e., the farm) will still be rated in megawatts. That’s what’s being lost in translation. There’s no time component, to explain how long of a “wind lull” the batteries would ride-through, in this context. That 22 MW system/plant may still be backed by diesel or natural gas. Often, the batteries are only present to give the diesel gen-set 2-4 minutes to come online and stabilize clean power.

      This is vague, but not necessarily incorrect.

      BTW, this would be a superb reuse for my “old” 40e batteries, when BMW is ready to upgrade my 40e to ~35m of AER, by offering an upgrade path like the i3 has. 🙂 Hint, hint, BMW.

      1. Pedant3000 says:

        Just for clarity, guyinacar, make sure you watch your forward slashes 🙂

        J, kWh, MWh, mWh, YWh and (perhaps surprisingly) Nm are all valid units of energy, kW/h is not. That would be a rate of change of power, as in “the power plant is able to ramp up its production at a rate of 500 kW/h”. Technically it’s a thing, but not really useful to this discussion.

        And to be clear, I’m still not sure if Vattenfall really means that their battery can put out 3.2 MW, or if they mean that it has 3.2 MWh of capacity. While the first could be correct, it would probably mean that the capacity of the system (which is all that people really care about) could be as low as a few hundred kWh, depending on what C-rate they’re allowing! I think/hope that the second case is more likely and that they just can’t tell energy from power. Which is VERY embarrassing for them, considering that it’s their only product! But screw Vattenfall anyway, they’re Europe’s third largest consumer of coal, if I remember correctly…

        1. guyinacar says:

          Agreed. Thank you!

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