Jinko Solar has recently launched Energy Storage System (ESS) products, can you talk more about them?
Jinko solar is focusing on providing flexible Energy Storage solutions that meet customers’ needs in terms of cost, quality, and performance. We offer a wide spectrum of Energy Storage Solutions for Residential, C&I and Utility sectors. The interesting part about the solution is its high level of customization, based on the application and the different sources connected to the project.
We develop the Energy storage solution for our clients where flexibility plays a critical role. It Is the company’s mission to build the trust in Solar where Storage brings more independency for Solar Systems making It more reliable and available around the clock.
The variety of applications and nature of the loads, in addition to the different energy supply sources for different applications created a demand to having a solution provider that can provide a reliable tailor-made solution. Single party liability Is needed which is what we provide, a complete plug and play Energy Storage Solution.
How can energy storage support the solar market in MENA market how do you plan to target the different markets?
As renewable energy generation becomes more mainstream in the region, its fluctuating nature is impacting the electricity systems for which energy storage is a key factor. Storage can help even out the fluctuation in solar energy resource availability and allow energy distribution to be repositioned from being used at the time generation to the peak demand times.
Our multifunctional team in the region is helping to raise the awareness of the market, direct and indirect customers about the benefits, safety, and feasibility of ESS. In addition, our presence through local partners and distributers in the region since almost a decade, is helping the market for immediate availability and local service for this Hi-Tech solution.
What according to you are the current opportunities, biggest challenges, in MENA Solar Storage Market?
We held few launching events for ESS, both online and offline, we have seen tremendous interest for ESS for countries with considerable population with no access to electricity in Middle East, North Africa and Francophone Africa which is a key factor and a main market driver.
Another two factors are the expensive fuel used to generate Electricity in some countries, and difficulty in transportation of fuel in others are making storage an ideal solution in these remote areas for residential and C&I sectors.
There are also some Utility scale opportunities in different MENA countries which are working closely with number of leading partners who are taking steps toward a low carbon future.
A valid challenge for Off grid systems is the shift in Technology from low-priced deep cycle lead-acid to the Lithium-ion batteries. The beautiful fact is, depending on the usage, the lifetime of Lithium-Ion is more than 10 times the lead acid batteries before its capacity is reduced substantially which justifies the investment from economical point of view. This is in addition to other benefits including efficiency, safety, and reliability.
Another time challenge is that this emerging market is the absence of regulations for grid connected energy storage systems which we think it is in making because the storage system represents an ideal solution for the Distribution companies to relieve the restrictions on grid connected PV systems.
Which technology will be expected to lead the growth of the storage industry?
The ESS represents an ideal solution for the transformation of electricity distribution from the time of generation to the time of peak demand. The exceptional demand and rapid growth in the Solar Energy we are experiencing and expected to continue for decades stimulated substantial improvement in the storage solutions technologies and costs and expected to have a revolutionary development within this decade as it is effectively supporting this energy mix development.
There are several factors taken into consideration when comparing different technologies of Lithium-Ion batteries, including efficiency, cost, chemical stability, degradation behavior, lifetime cycles, safety, and many others.
Combined with Battery management system, JinKo Solar uses highly efficient, extremely stable under very high temperature and No-maintenance Lithium Iron Phosphate which is by far the safest chemistry available in Lithium Ion Technology, and we believe that this technology will lead the growth in the for PV plus storage industry.
The solar-storage market has started to take shape, what are some of the technical considerations for project developers in the MENA region?
If we put the financial aspect a side, the main technical considerations would be the specific power, specific energy, and depth of discharge for the new ESS units.
Of course, the lifetime and efficiency degradation will have a fine share in the research and development of these applications since the combination of storage with solar requires both technologies to have similar lifetimes while solar photovoltaic systems have a lifetime of 25-35 years with very minimal annual degradation.
Aspects like lifetime and depth of discharge (DoD) have played massive roles in the spreading of this application; the depth of discharge for some lithium-based batteries have reached 99% compared to a traditional of 50-80% for other types of batteries resulting massive improvements in space requirements alongside the long lifetime achieved by adding other compounds.
If we copy the focus of developers on PV modules to ESS units, then we expect a major focus on reducing the levelized cost of energy, and in this case, it would be the stored energy.
We have noticed that this region is extremely competitive in achieving low records for utility scale PV plants and we expect seeing record numbers in solar plus storage systems resulting major focus on deploying the most advanced technical developments that reflects the best value of investment in terms of return to the developer.