In order to meet Cayman’s energy policy requirement that 70 per cent of electricity should come from renewable sources, Cayman’s power company is having to look at innovative ways to help people store electricity at home if they have generated it via solar or similar power. So CUC have partnered with a California-based company, Electriq Power, to begin a pilot scheme involving 10 homes in Cayman. The scheme will see each home set up with a PowerPod 2 battery system that will work ‘behind-the-meter’ to allow people to store excess electricity that they have generated but don’t need.
The California company has been awarded the contract to install the batteries and will also market and manage the behind-the-meter systems as a virtual power plant, with installations being carried out by local contractors. It is anticipated that the project will showcase behind the meter energy storage system technologies.
According to a press release by CUC, their studies have shown that a substantial amount of front-of-meter and behind-the-meter battery storage will be needed to integrate more solar and wind energy.In order to see if battery storage systems in residential homes will help to meet future energy goals, CUC and Electriq Power will site the PowerPod 2 systems in the selected private homes to provide both backup to the homes during power-outages, as well as grid services to support CUC’s distribution infrastructure.
CUC hopes they will discover best practices for installation and operation, understand capital and operational costs and demonstrate and measure multiple value propositions for the residential user and for themselves.
Frank Magnotti, CEO of Electriq Power said the agreement with CUC was the company’s latest project in the Caribbean, where renewables and resilience were so vital to the region’s future.
CUC’s Sacha Tibbetts, Vice President Customer Services & Technology, said that battery storage
was seen by CUC as an important component in enabling a transition to renewable energy sources.
“While the value proposition to CUC and its customers from large-scale battery installations is well understood, small customer-sited batteries are relatively new and not yet fully understood by the industry. CUC is looking forward to working with Electriq Power and to piloting small-scale batteries at ten residential customer sites. This will allow us to better understand the value to CUC and our customers,” Mr Tibbetts said.