EnBW said it has become the first German energy company to plan all future solar farms with an integrated battery storage system.

The utility majority-owned by the state of Baden-Württemberg made the pledge on the occasion of the delivery of a battery storage system for its solar farm near Bruchsal, north of Karlsruhe that in December is slated to start operations with a power-generating capacity of 4MW, and a storage capacity of 3.5MWh.

“This is a technologically important step for us to increase further the potential of renewable energies in the electricity supply,” said Michael Class, who is responsible for portfolio development at EnBW.

“The electricity generated can be fed into the grid more flexibly and better throughout the day.”

Battery storage can cover a solar farm’s own power needs and provide load balancing and shifting, as will be the case at the facility in Bruchsal. If a power grid is heavily utilised, the feed of the array be reduced, while if demand is particularly high, additional amounts of electricity can be called up at short notice.

“In addition to the developments in the storage market, the findings from our previous battery storage projects have made this step possible,” Class said.

The utility already operates battery storage at several generation locations, such as the Gottesgabe and Alttrebbin solar parks in Brandenburg and Rhineland-Palatinate.

“The experiences gained were crucial for the development of standard models for storage systems as well as for the definition of the various application scenarios.”

EnBW next to the standard fitting of new solar farms with battery storage is also examining the retrofitting of existing systems and the future equipping of wind farms with appropriate batteries.