WA’s first 600kWh Flow Battery Energy Storage System

By December 21, 2020 News, RBSS, Semini

In early 2020, Semini Custom Feeds, a stockfeed supply company in southwest WA, approached Renewable Battery Storage Solutions (RBSS) to investigate and provide options to overhaul and expand their on-site energy production plant — gearing it to their current demands and into the future.

For more than 3 decades, Semini Custom Feeds has relied on a series of diesel generators to produce all their power needs. As the business grew, the on-site power plant expanded to eventually house 5 diesel generators capable of producing 900kVA. But, as with all generators, not all the power produced was required at the same time and a large amount of excess energy simply went to waste. In an effort to mitigate this energy loss – a manual and later auto-power management system was employed to harness as much energy as possible, reign in diesel costs and importantly, reduce their environmental impact. Unfortunately the current setup was proving to be very arduous to manage and not meeting their goals.

CEO and Managing Director Jack Semini was well aware that batteries, coupled with photovoltaics and a small amount of diesel power, could streamline and improve the company’s overall power requirements — with major upsides in cost savings and for the environment. RBSS highlighted the characteristics and advantages of flow battery technology as an alternative to solid-state batteries. We were able to demonstrate that batteries using conventional solid-state chemistries do not offer the long-term energy-storage requirements, safety properties or longevity of which is demanded by a fully off-grid site.

Semini Custom Feeds operations required batteries to be fully consumed day-in, day-out, working hard over long periods and deliver power loads for up to 10 hours or more to the entire site. Mr Semini was convinced that a battery energy storage system using flow battery technology had the characteristics to at least match the performance of diesel generators in providing stable and reliable power – all the while reducing their reliance on fossil fuels.

Employing 60 Redflow Zinc Bromine Batteries, Semini Custom Feeds is about to be the first 600kWh (0.6MWh) flow battery energy storage system / off-grid power plant in Western Australia. RBSS is excited to announce this deployment and to have Semini Custom Feeds leading the charge for industries to find better ways to meet their energy requirements and achieve environmental sustainability.

We look forward to sharing more about this project as it progresses.