Stacks on Value Stacks: The Large-Scale Solar Plus Storage Market is Coming Together

By on August 8, 2019

Read the full article on Solar Builder here

AUGUST 6, 2019 | BY CHARLES W. THURSTON

Large-scale solar + storage is on the drawing boards of a host of major EPCs, with the current round of demonstration plants leading to wholesale installations by 2020, say several industry players.

“While we are early in the deployment cycle for large-scale solar + storage, we expect a ramping at the end of 2020, then an acceleration of the market with scale in 2021,” says David Stripling, NEXTracker’s global manager of storage products. This timetable is a year or two ahead of what he expected several years ago, he notes.

The predictions for solar + storage range widely, but Stripling suggests that the independent system operators (ISOs) across the country are a good indicator. “My own research on interconnection queues across the five ISOs suggest solar + storage will amount to 20 GW by 2023. For a general order of magnitude, you could say that over the next five years, a 5-GW target will be easily achieved.”

The United States will grow to be the largest global market for solar + storage this year, where peaking capacity requirements are driving procurement, opines IHS Market in arecent study.

Utility-scale solar + storage projects now are online or being built in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Indiana and Florida, and the list grows. In March, NextEra Energy said it would build the Florida Power and Light (FPL) Manatee Energy Storage Center’s battery system, with four times the capacity of the world’s largest battery system currently in operation. The 409-MW/900-MWh battery system at Manatee will be added to an existing 74.5-MW solar plant on the west coast of the state near Tampa.