The US Department of Energy (DOE) has offered AES Energy Storage, LLC a conditional commitment for a loan guarantee for $17.1 million to support the construction of a 20 megawatt (MW) energy storage system using advanced lithium-ion batteries. (Earlier post.) The AES project, located in Johnson City, New York, will help provide a more stable and efficient electrical grid for the state’s high-voltage transmission network.

Traditionally, grid frequency regulation, which is needed to balance power generation and consumption on the grid, is maintained by burning additional fossil fuels at power plants. The AES project eliminates the need to burn fossil fuels and instead uses battery technology and new software that will provide the same regulation at a lower price. This advanced frequency regulation capability will allow renewable electricity generation to play a larger role in New York’s transmission network.

The AES technology can help reduce carbon emissions by 70% compared to frequency regulation provided by fossil energy suppliers.

The AES project will include advanced lithium-ion battery cells from A123 Systems, Inc. The contained battery and related electrical systems are assembled, tested and validated in an A123 manufacturing facility in Hopkinton, MA.