New York Puts Green Backup Power on Wheels

By William Atkinson | Oct 15, 2016




This summer, New York-based Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) spent $1.6 billion to upgrade its delivery system, including 12 network transformers, 70 overhead transformers, 16 underground feeder sections, 37 overhead sections of power lines and reinforcement of 25 electric feeders. Much of this work was focused on meeting the growing energy needs of Midtown Manhattan’s west side, especially the massive Hudson Yards residential and commercial complex.

As a way to further ensure adequate power to its service territory, especially during peak demand, Con Edison has been using portable diesel generators to provide dispatchable and temporary on-site energy needs.

However, to continue to ensure adequate power and reduce environmental concerns associated with the portable diesel generators, the utility is rolling out a mobile battery system to supply specific neighborhoods with clean power during peak demand.

The Transportable Energy Storage System (TESS) trailer-mounted battery system can store 500 kilowatts and provide up to 800 kilowatt-hours of electricity. It was developed in partnership with Electrovaya, a Canadian company that designs and builds lithium-ion battery systems.

“We worked closely with Electrovaya for some time to develop the specification for this project and are excited about seeing the results during field trials,” said Margaret Jolly, director of research and development for Con Edison. “We believe that TESS will have tremendous potential to strengthen our network and ultimately improve our service to our customers.”

Field trials are expected to take place later this year.

The project received support through the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s Smart Grid Program, which is part of the state’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy.

TESS is expected to begin operation in the summer of 2017. Con Edison plans to bring TESS to the neighborhood where demand exists and hook it up to the electrical delivery network.

“Technology is giving us new ways every day to provide reliable, resilient service, and we want to be thorough in looking into every potential opportunity,” Jolly said.

About The Author

ATKINSON has been a full-time business magazine writer since 1976. Contact him at [email protected]

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