Distributed energy resources company Swell Energy is set to help utilities in three US states to ensure grid reliability by providing them with flexible energy during times when demand is high.
Swell Energy will be deploying some 14,000 distributed energy storage systems to establish four virtual power plants with a total capacity of 200MWh.
The virtual power plants will be integrated with 100MW of solar capacity.
The company has secured funding from the Infrastructure and Power strategy of Ares Management Corporation and Aligned Climate Capital. The partnership with the finance institutions has enabled the creation of a financing vehicle to support up to $450 million that is required for the projects.
The financing mechanisms include Swell Energy’s Home Energy Subscription Agreement, which allows homeowners to finance their home energy systems through Swell, while generating, storing, and consuming their home’s energy in an optimized and transactive manner.
Swell started the delivery of energy capacity and grid services for its first utility virtual power plant in January 2021.
The company has plans to deploy up to 200MWh of energy storage systems by June 2023 and up to 3,000GWh of distributed solar over the next 30 years. The company expects prosumers to store up to 1,000GWh of solar capacity for its virtual power plant operations.
The development comes after Swell Energy was commissioned by utilities in three states to establish over 200MWh of dispatchable energy capacity.
Suleman Khan, CEO of Swell Energy, said: “Utilities are increasingly looking to distributed energy resources as valuable ‘grid edge’ assets.”
“By networking these individual homes and businesses into virtual power plants, Swell is able to bring down the cost of ownership for its customers and help utilities manage demand across their electric grids.
“By receiving GridRevenue from Swell, customers participating in our VPP programmes pay less for their solar energy generation and storage systems, while potentially reducing the risk of a local power outage, and keeping their homes and businesses securely powered through any outages.”