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ENERGY

DNV GL SERVICES FOR SOLAR + STORAGE Managing the challenges and opportunities of deploying energy storage with solar generation

SAFER, SMARTER, GREENER


02 ENERGY DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage

DECADES OF TECHNOLOGY AND INDEPENDENT ENGINEERING EXPERTISE IN EVOLVING ENERGY MARKETS Across the globe, DNV GL is leading the way in supporting client success with Solar + Storage opportunities. The combined application of solar generation and energy storage can provide multiple benefits to many system stakeholders. As the technologies converge into coordinated applications, DNV GL is uniquely qualified to assist in all areas of combined solar and storage applications. We draw upon highly recognised expertise in solar technologies, storage technologies, battery testing, safety, certification, system optimisation, grid services, and control systems to provide the only complete suite of independent service offerings to clients for these applications. Clients can leverage our capabilities for:

■ Performance testing, safety testing, product qualification, and

DNV GL has focused our industry leading solar, storage, and testing expertise to provide a comprehensive set of services that can support a broad range of client needs that arise in this fast-moving application area. Customer groups include: Investors & financiers

Utilities

Developers

Government agencies

Equipment manufacturers

Owners & operators

certification -- Solar modules and components -- Inverters, DC/DC converters, and other power-electronic devices -- Storage components, modules, and systems -- Combined systems and controls ■■ Independent engineering due diligence for combined solar and storage project financing ■■ Owner’s engineering to assist developers in navigating this new technology landscape ■■ Technology reviews (‘bankability studies’) that provide manufacturers and system integrators with the risk assessments they need to support successful financing ■■ Regulatory compliance review ■■ Modeling (impact analysis and valuation) for manufacturers, utilities, and developers ■■ Duty cycle impact for battery degradation ■■ Sizing of system components to optimise income, costs, and risks ■■ Support for technology development ■■ Market analysis to facilitate business strategies ■■ Energy assessments for solar and storage system applications ■■ Utility grid integration DNV GL also offers similar services for storage in conjunction with other renewable resources. In particular, we have extensive experience with wind projects and technologies.


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DNV GL’s expertise supports the entire storage deployment process

Project analysis and risk assessment

Modeling

■■ Impact analysis of renewable integration including storage ■■ Valuation of applications for -- wholesale, grid operations -- transmission and distribution -- behind-the-meter, commercial, industrial, and residential ■■ Microgrid integration and optimization ■■ Long-term battery performance and degradation, specific to the application

■■ Mapping technologies to applications ■■ Investment risk analysis adopted from proven renewable deployment practices -- project feasibility studies -- bankability studies -- independent engineering analysis -- assessment of income streams, including uncertainties

Testing, certification, and performance verification ■■ Utilising dedicated storage testing laboratories to assess technologies ■■ Adopting proven safety and evaluation lessons ■■ Creation of safety and certification standards through established DNV GL processes ■■ Monitoring and tracking applications to verify performance

Modeling and assessments Modeling (impact analysis, valuation) DNV GL has created and utilises a set of tools to help stakeholders assess the impact and benefits of storage and solar combined applications (as well as other generation types). This DNV GL family of tools includes: ■■ Impacts of Solar + Storage projects on electricity transmission and distribution systems ■■ Optimisation of ‘Behind the Meter’ installations on commercial, industrial, residential customer sites, and microgrids ■■ Effects on battery capacity degradation, and selection of best battery technology ■■ Optimising income from multiple value streams ■■ Integration with PVSyst to allow full optimisation of the combined system

DNV GL’s extensive history in working with the core technologies of both solar and storage enables our team to provide application potential, market analysis, technology assessments, as well as strategy support for deploying and optimising the revenue potential of the combined applications. DNV GL experts are able to assess advanced controls to optimise the potential of the combined systems and value the multiple benefit streams such systems will offer for applications located on either side of the meter or when the systems are shared across the meter. Additional tools are also available to examine the operations and maintenance of these systems over long operating time lines. As developers look to deploy combined solar and storage applications, there are needs for optimising the size of the storage device in combination with the solar equipment, understanding the daily duty cycle of the application and impact on the battery life, and mapping the best technology to the application. DNV GL experts are ready to support client needs in each of these areas.


04 ENERGY DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage

Component and full system testing

Engineering and deployment

DNV GL is committed to testing and ensuring that systems are safe and reliable. DNV GL has created independent testing laboratories specifically for emerging technologies. These facilities provide a ‘hands on’ competence and capability that is unique.

As technologies such as solar, storage, and packaged solarstorage solutions mature and reach a state of deployment, a new set of needs are created in order to successfully and safely install, commission, and operate systems in the field. DNV GL leverages a long history of successful support of solar systems to serve multiple client needs for engineering and deployment of integrated systems. Our experts continuously adapt our service offerings to adhere to changing market dynamics, helping clients achieve success across the entire energy value chain.

DNV GL currently operates the following test centres that support solar and energy storage: ■■ The BEST Storage and Commercialization Center in Rochester, NY where DNV GL along with the State of New York and their storage consortium conducts performance verification and fire safety testing of storage devices. ■■ The DNV GL high-power and high-voltage testing labs in the Netherlands, including the Flex Power Grid Lab, where our team can test systems up to 2 MW and 24 kV. ■■ PV Evolution Labs (PVEL) in Berkeley, California, which has an environmental chamber testing laboratory as well as outdoor field testing capabilities for solar panels, inverters, and integrated solar and storage systems. These facilities allow DNV GL to provide a variety of testing services for solar, storage, and combined applications. Our capabilities include conducting performance and verification testing for systems, technology assessments, safety and destructive testing of components, as well as reliability and performance assessment capabilities for solar systems, including our inverter and PV module qualification programs. Having these capabilities allows DNV GL to assess technologies and system controls, ensuring that devices are able to integrate with the grid and perform in both individual and combined applications.

These services include: ■■ Energy assessments ■■ Independent engineering ■■ Owner’s engineering ■■ Technology reviews (‘bankability studies’) ■■ Environmental and permitting support ■■ Utility grid interconnection services ■■ RFP and procurement assistance ■■ Supplier and contractor evaluations and training ■■ Asset management support The DNV GL team focuses on technology reviews that thoroughly evaluate an individual technology or combined set of technologies in order to mitigate potential risks and support system financing that meets the expectations of the investment community and end users. These reviews often include visiting the product manufacturing facility and review of identical or similar products in service. For those just entering this developing market, DNV GL owner’s engineering services help ensure that developers and EPC contractors meet the highest standards of engineering excellence when designing and installing systems. DNV GL provides the energy assessments to define the system performance and operational goals to ensure that the project will meet revenue expectations.


DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage ENERGY 05

Research and innovation In addition to our ability to couple modeling and technology assessments with hands-on testing and engineering support, DNV GL also conducts independent research activities to help establish safety protocols, recommended practices, and develop unique tools to support specific applications. DNV GL dedicates 5% of its revenues to research and innovation. Our R&I activities focus on key aspects of the evolving storage industry and solar application considerations. ■■ Developing safety protocols for advanced storage technologies ■■ Developing recommended practices for performance and safety ■■ Creating tools to assess the combined long-term degradation of PV modules, batteries, and other major equipment due to project duration and duty cycles


06 ENERGY DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage

Project references USE CASE FOR PV PLANT WITH STORAGE Customer

Developer of a 10MW PV plant in Puerto Rico

Challenge

The utility interconnection requirements for PV power plants in Puerto Rico are among the most challenging in the world. The technical requirements include many factors beyond those commonly mandated. This includes specifications for maximum allowed power ramp rates and frequency control. These requirements drive the inclusion of a storage device into the system.

Approach

DNV GL applied proven approaches used in the review of many PV power plants to model the operation of the solar system. This information was used in the evaluation of the required performance of the storage device to be employed. The overall combined solar and storage system was assessed to determine its compliance with the utility interconnection requirements over the range of system operating conditions.

Value to the Development of a PV power plant that meets interconnection requirements and can be successfully customer financed.

BEST TEST and Commercialization Center Customer

New York State, Energy Storage Industry

Challenge

As U.S. states such as New York look to assist high impact industries such as solar and storage to transition early stage applications to commercialized systems, innovative approaches are needed to maximize the impact of the State support and available funds to incentivise the industries. The challenge in this case was to help accelerate the entire storage industry with the ultimate goal of developing a storage industry for the state.

Approach

New York looked to its emerging Public-Private Partnership approach to accomplish this task. Instead of using funds to help one project or one technology, the State’s Energy Storage consortium, NY-BEST, teamed with DNV GL to build a commercialisation and test center. The result of the effort was to implement a commercialisation and test center, operated by DNV GL, which performs 3rd party verification testing, performance testing, and safety tests for storage systems that range in size from button cells up to systems with power levels of 45kVA, with the potential to increase to 90kVA with future expansion.

With this lab, and DNV GL’s support of the renewable energy industry as a leading independent engineering firm and technical due diligence provider, DNV GL is able to test and qualify energy storage solutions to meet project needs. Data from DNV GL’s Product Qualification Programs directly support warranty and performance guarantee evaluations in projects prior to commissioning as well as lifetime assessments during the project life. The laboratory also supports safety testing to verify heat and gas hazards from various battery chemistries. This industry leading data has been used to support code and standards development across the US and internationally. DNV GL’s in-house experts can also develop custom testing approaches to validate product performance for technology developers and buyers. Extensive facilities at the DNV GL BEST T&CC include test stands and environmental chambers, which offer over 390 channels of data acquisition capability.

Value to the customer

For manufacturers, developers and adopters of energy storage products and systems, the DNV GL BEST T&CC facility offers a location to test, verify, and demonstrate the performance capabilities of a device in a modern, state of the art facility.


DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage ENERGY 07

TECHNOLOGY REVIEWS FOR ENERGY STORAGE AND SOLAR Customer

Several leading battery, inverter, and integrated system manufacturers interested in accelerating their time to market with new combined solar and storage products.

Challenge

Manufacturers wish to obtain third-party independent review and analysis of their components, system designs, and company characteristics to assist with obtaining project financing.

Approach

DNV GL conducted a detailed technology review, evaluating the product for specified characteristics, performance, reliability, regulatory compliance and the assessed manufacturer for their history, quality systems service infrastructure, and manufacturing process. This included visiting the manufacturing facility and field product installations.

Value to the customer

DNV GL produced a two-stage written report. The initial report provided a summary of the detailed technical evaluation for use by the manufacturer. This enabled them to identify potential barriers to industry acceptance and the eventual ‘bankability’ of their products. The second stage report results were based upon close feedback and reviews with the manufacturer with a final document intended for use with prospective customers and financiers.

USE CASE FOR SOLAR + STORAGE SHARED RESOURCES Customer

The California Energy Commission

Challenge

Storage is seen as a device that can be utilised by electricity consumers, project developers, and utilities. However, when an actual site location is determined, benefits are typically restricted to a single area within the energy ecosystem, thus limiting the overall effectiveness of the storage device. For example, storage devices on the utility side of the electricity meter provide benefits exclusively to the load serving entity, while behind-the-meter devices typically benefit only the end user. This study examined the potential to capture combined benefits to the customer and the utility for storage devices sited on either side of the meter. These are realized through controls that enable combined solar and storage technologies to serve multiple applications in a non-conflicting manner. Through these alternative approaches, the DNV GL team examined the total benefits that can be captured and how they may be equitably shared between utilities and customers.

Approach The DNV GL study examined the ‘shared services’ concept under two scenarios: ■ Solar + Storage is installed on the customer side of the energy meter, with the primary application being bill management. The utility has limited access to the storage device under a cost-sharing mechanism. The utility uses the device for PV power smoothing to mitigate the effect of high volume of renewables installed downstream from the device. ■ The energy storage device is installed on the utility side of the meter, being wholly owned and operated by the utility. The primary application of storage is solar power smoothing. In addition, the storage device provides increased reliability to selected customers, under a micro grid configuration, in the event of grid outage. For each scenario, detailed operations of storage, customer behaviour, and performance of the distribution circuit were modeled and simulated. The technical performance results were monetised for evaluating the system’s financial performance. Value to the customer

The benefits that storage assets can provide are often territorially limited simply because of where they are sited. This analysis showed how additional benefits, savings, and grid support can be achieved through assets of a system being located at different segments of the grid. Absent regulatory issues, such ‘shared resources’ can be optimised and utilised in a cost effective manner to allow more benefits to accrue to the customers, utilities, and grid operators.


08 ENERGY DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage

Project references UTILITY CASE FOR SOLAR + STORAGE Customer

Electric utility service provider, North America

Challenge

Provide an independent technical review of the battery energy storage system controls to ensure federal Investment Tax Credit could be captured..

Approach

DNV GL provided project-level independent engineering assessment of for a 10 MW / 2.5 MWh battery storage system coupled with a 2.0 MW PV array using a leading lithium titanium oxide (LTO) battery supplier’s battery system and Parker inverters along with JA Solar PV panels. The scope covered a project and offtake agreement review (IA, PPA, ESA with TEP) that provides capacity and ancillary services, a software/controls review of the battery system, Investment Tax Credit (ITC) assessment, and substantial completion certification (FAT, SAT, commissioning, production).

Value to the customer

Customer successfully secured tax equity financing based on outcome of DNV GL review.

UTILITY CASE FOR SOLAR + STORAGE Customer

Solar energy provider

Challenge

Provide a project-level independent engineering review of solar + storage facility on Hawaiian island of Kauai.

Approach

DNV GL provided project-level independent engineering assessment of for a 17 MWdc PV array and 52 MWh of battery energy storage using the client’s battery system and TMEIC inverters along with Canadian Solar PV panels. The scope covered a site assessment, a solar resource and production estimate, an interconnection and offtake agreement review (KIUC) that provides capacity and ancillary services, project design review (electrical, structural/geotechnical/civil), major equipment review (batteries, inverters, controls), and construction and operations assessment (EPC, O&M).

Value to the customer

Successfully secured debt financing to build project.

RESIDENTIAL AND C&I SCALE SOLAR + STORAGE (BEHIND THE METER) Customer

Renewable energy financier

Challenge

Provide portfolio-level technical due diligence for solar + storage installations at multiple schools.

Approach

DNV GL provided portfolio-level independent engineering review for six solar + storage projects totaling ~1 MW of battery storage for elementary and middle schools in central California. The scope covered a site assessment, a solar resource and production estimate, project design review (electrical, structural/geotechnical/civil), major equipment review (batteries, inverters, controls), and project schedule review.

Value to the customer

Secured financing for development of projects.

Investors & financiers

Utilities

Developers

Government agencies

Equipment manufacturers

Owners & Operators


DNV GL Services for Solar + Storage ENERGY 09

RESIDENTIAL AND C&I SCALE SOLAR + STORAGE (BEHIND THE METER) Customer Sunrun Challenge

Portfolio-level performance review of solar + storage technology.

Approach

DNV GL provided portfolio-level independent engineering for Sunrun’s Fleet of BrightBox systems. The scope covered major equipment review (batteries, inverters, controls), homeowner agreement review, testing result review, electrical and structural design checks, and financial model review.

Value to the customer

Secured tax equity financing for BrightBox systems.

APAC UTILITY CASE SOLAR + STORAGE Customer

Kennedy Energy Park, Australia

Challenge

Technical advisory services for this complex world-leading utility-scale wind/solar/battery plant, to identify the technical risks and aid financing.

Approach

This is a 43.2MW wind and 15MW solar farm connected to a 2MW/4MWh lithium-ion battery energy storage system. DNV GL provided technical due diligence focusing on key technical aspects of the project, project contracts, the project location, and the project participants. The key technical aspects cover the technology review, plant design review, grid connection, etc. The scope covered site assessment, an energy resource, and production estimate, grid connection, and offtake agreement review, project design review (electrical, structural/geotechnical/civil), major equipment review (solar, batteries, inverters, controls), review of financial model and construction schedule and construction and operations assessment (EPC, O&M).

Value to the customer

The customer was able to identify and understand the project’s technical risk exposure and able to make the project bankable.

APAC UTILITY CASE SOLAR + STORAGE Customer

Lakeland Solar and Battery Project, Australia

Challenge

Provide technical advisory services to allow the customer to assess the technical risks, bankability and construction progress for Australia’s first utility-scale solar + storage plant.

Approach 10MWac utility-scale solar PV plus 1.4MW/5.299 MWh energy storage system. DNV GL provided technical due diligence and construction monitoring services to the lenders. The technical due diligence covered many aspects including site assessment, an energy resource and production estimate, grid connection and offtake agreements review, project design review (electrical, structural/ geotechnical/civil), major equipment review (solar, batteries, inverters, controls, BoPe), financial model, construction schedule, construction review, and operations assessment (EPC O&M). During the construction monitoring phase, DNV GL issued a monthly progress report to the lenders, and payment milestone certificates including cost-to-complete tests. The payment milestone verification covered several activities including site visits, review of technical documents, inspection and testing plans. Value to the customer

The customer was able to identify and understand the project’s technical risks and bankability and help the financers to understand the progress of the project.


SAFER, SMARTER, GREENER

Top and left cover photos courtesy of SunEdison.

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Solar and storage services  

Managing the challenges and opportunities of deploying energy storage with solar generation

Solar and storage services  

Managing the challenges and opportunities of deploying energy storage with solar generation