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Siemens Energy work on Californian battery storage project

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Energy Global,

Siemens Energy has announced that it will design, build and commission a black-start system at Clearway’s Marsh Landing Generating Station (Marsh Landing), near Antioch, California, US. Black-start capabilities will allow the station to restart the flow of electricity to the facility’s auxiliary systems without the support of an external power supply in the case of an outage or blackout situation. Siemens Energy will engineer and build a customised battery energy storage system (BESS) that can support up to three attempts to restart a unit at Marsh Landing within one hour.

Traditional emergency back-up systems run on diesel generators or small, fossil fuel industrial turbines. By contrast, the BESS-based black-start system operates in a carbon-neutral way to start one of the plant’s four combustion turbine generator units. In addition to the BESS, the project will involve transformers to increase voltage, switch gear to integrate the BESS into the broader Marsh Landing system, electrical, civil and structural engineering and control system modifications.

“Battery storage systems like this one are capable of fully restarting power on a highly expedited basis,” said Laura Anderson, Senior Vice President, Controls and Digitalisation for Siemens Energy. “We are excited to lead this project at Marsh Landing because it will not only help to restore power quickly in the event of an outage, but it will reduce emissions over traditional back-up systems. It will also improve grid reliability in the Bay Area.”

Marsh Landing is a four-unit, simple-cycle plant and was one of Siemens Energy’s first ‘Flex-Power’ plants, which are capable of fast starts that minimise emissions while ramping up to full power in only 12 minutes. It entered commercial operation in 2013 and can provide 720 MW of electricity to the California grid, enough to serve up to 650 000 homes. The company supplied the four gas turbines, four generators, the SPPA-T3000 distributed control system and auxiliary and secondary systems for the plant.

“Battery storage will play an increasingly important role in both securing the power grid and enabling renewable energy generation,” said Chad Plotkin, Chief Financial Officer, Clearway Energy. “We are excited to work with Siemens Energy on this strategically important project at Marsh Landing to deliver long-term grid resilience and continue to act as a source of reliable power supply to the Bay Area.”

Work on the project has already begun, with the project scheduled to commence in early summer 2021.



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