This work investigates the effects of transmission losses, constraints and increased renewable energy penetration on planning energy storage allocation and investment. By modifying a DC Optimal Power Flow model using a linearized approximation for ohmic losses we were able to understand which network characteristic or inhibitor drives the most change in expanding utility scale storage. Four different storage technologies were explored—Compressed Air Energy Storage, Pumped Hydro Storage, Lithium-Ion Battery and Fly Wheel—each having different charging, capacity and cost characteristics. The results of the storage allocation trials revealed that network congestion was a more influential network inhibitor than were line losses. Losses only had substantial effects on a free-flowing network but produced marginal changes in allocation in congested ones. The conclusion of the investment trials revealed two things: 1) Storage investment is not significantly affected by transmission constraints so long as renewable generation stays constant and relatively low; 2) More flexible technologies like Fly Wheels are favored at lower volumes of renewable penetration for their load balancing abilities while cheaper technologies are best as the volume of renewable power generated increase and become the majority of grid power.
Keywords: Capacity Planning, Electrical Markets, Energy Policy and Planning
Published: July 2018.