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China's Five Major Power Generation Groups' Energy Storage Layout

published: 2024-05-24 17:20

By the end of 2023, renewables have become the main source of new power generation. For the year, China added 300 million kilowatts of renewable energy capacity, accounting for 85% of the new installed power generation capacity.

However, given the volatility of renewables, there is also a lot of interest in energy storage that can smooth out fluctuations. For the five major power generation groups in the torrent of new energy transition, they obviously also know the importance of energy storage.

So, what kind of layout have the five major power generation groups carried out in the field of energy storage? What are the characteristics of these layouts?

We combed through the actions of the five major power generation groups and found that all-round and key technologies are the key words.

Let's look at Huaneng Group first. In 2023, the annual report of Huaneng International, a listed company under Huaneng Group, shows that during the period, the company's controllable installed power generation capacity was 135,655 MW, and low-carbon and clean energy accounted for 31.24%.

During the same period, the company added 10,003.9 MW of grid-connected controllable power generation capacity, of which 15,511 MW was wind turbine assembly capacity, accounting for 11.43%, solar power generation assembly capacity was 13,100 MW, accounting for 9.66%, hydropower generation assembly capacity was 370 MW, accounting for 0.27%, and biomass generator assembly capacity was 160 MW, accounting for 0.12%.

The increase in renewable energy is rapid.

In the face of the rapid growth of renewable energy power generation, Huaneng International is also actively deploying energy storage. In 2023, its Fujian Luoyuan Power Plant will develop a 5 MW supercapacitor energy storage system. In addition, Huaneng International has also invested in Suzhou Sugao New Energy Service Co., Ltd. and other enterprises.

Looking at Huadian Group, the development of energy storage adheres to the path of both the old and the new.

The so-called new and old does not refer to the old and new energy, but to the traditional energy storage technology and the new energy storage technology. According to the type of energy storage technology, energy storage includes traditional energy storage represented by pumped hydro storage, as well as new energy storage represented by electrochemistry and flywheel.

According to the 2023 Huadian International annual report, the company has a multi-point layout of pumped storage and a number of new pumped storage companies during the period. As of the end of the reporting period, Huadian International had a total of 45 holding power generation enterprises in operation, of which 2,459 MW were hydropower holdings;

During the period, the Company also established Huadian Jingyu Pumped Storage Co., Ltd., Shaanxi Huadian Jinshuihe Pumped Storage Co., Ltd., Jiangxi Huadian Pumped Storage Co., Ltd., and Zhejiang Huadian Wuxi River Hybrid Pumped Storage Power Generation Co., Ltd. The intensity of Huadian International's investment in the field of pumped storage is visible to the naked eye.

Of course, Huadian International is also actively exploring new energy storage in 2023. For example, the company's disclosure of a list of important projects under construction "hidden" a long-term energy storage power station for lithium iron carbonate and iron-chromium flow batteries at the Lae power plant.

Looking at Datang International, the 2023 annual report shows that the installed capacity of the company's projects under construction during the period is 9,964.65 megawatts, including 4,670.12 megawatts of thermal power projects under construction, 3,047.65 megawatts of wind power projects under construction, 2,146.88 megawatts of photovoltaic projects under construction, and 100 megawatts of energy storage projects under construction.

Although Datang International's annual report does not mention much about the energy storage business, judging from the company's previous signing actions, it is also actively seeking assistance. For example, in July last year, Datang International signed a contract with Beijing Jianlong Heavy Industry Group Co., Ltd.

At that time, Liang Yongpan, Secretary of the Party Committee and Chairman of Datang International, said that there are points of convergence and complementarity between the two companies in promoting industrial upgrading and high-quality development, and they hope to further strengthen strategic synergy and docking, and carry out pragmatic cooperation in a wider field, deeper and higher level around power supply, new energy development, pumped storage and compressed air energy storage.

Compared with Huaneng, Huadian and Datang, State Power Investment and National Energy Group, which have undergone restructuring, have larger enterprises and more active energy storage layout.

Let's start with the National Energy Group. In 2017, China Guodian Corporation and Shenhua Group Co., Ltd. were jointly reorganized into China Energy Group. As a central backbone energy enterprise, China Energy Group owns two A+H-share listed companies, China Shenhua and Longyuan Power, and A-share listed companies of Guodian Power, Changyuan Power, Longyuan Technology and Yinglite.

The national energy group, which is a big business, also dares to make efforts in the layout of energy storage. Taking Guodian Technology and Environmental Protection Group and North China Electric Power University as an example, it initially took the pitch control system of wind turbines and fieldbus systems as its advantageous businesses, and now its energy storage business has grown.

According to the disclosure of Guoneng Information Control, as of May 20, the cumulative annual production of battery module pack in Yangzhong Energy Storage Production Base exceeded 900 MWh, of which the production in April reached 245.8 MWh, an increase of 35.9% month-on-month, a record high for the same period in history.

In addition to the layout of energy storage batteries and other products, the national energy group is not far behind in building energy storage projects. For example, the Penglai project, which started construction in March this year with a total capacity of 101 MW/205 MWh, is a shared energy storage project with the largest variety of new energy storage technologies in China.

For another example, on December 6, 2023, the National Energy Group Ningxia Electric Power "Flywheel Energy Storage + Thermal Power Joint Frequency Modulation" project. It not only creatively proposes the joint frequency modulation and coordinated control method of traditional thermal power and new flywheel technology, but also fills the technical gap of five-degree-of-freedom radial ultra-low power permanent magnet offset hybrid magnetic bearing and its control technology of ten-ton heavy-duty rotor, and self-damping axial permanent magnet passive intrinsic stable support.

Finally, China Energy Group also established an energy storage technology sharing laboratory in 2022. It is understood that the laboratory is a key platform for the energy storage R&D capacity building of the New Energy Institute, and has the ability to test and certify energy storage systems, including the arrival sampling inspection of core components such as battery cells, grid-connected testing such as grid adaptability of energy storage systems/power stations, and operation assessment and testing such as rated energy testing.

Judging from the details, China Energy Group not only focuses on energy storage, but also pays attention to the cutting-edge technology of energy storage. Coincidentally,, which has also undergone restructuring and also has a "big guy", is also the same in terms of energy storage layout.

For example, in December 2023, Yunnan International Power Investment Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Yunnan International") and Science and Technology Research Institute Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Academia Sinica") jointly developed a megawatt-scale air thermal cycle energy storage project, which uses CASE technology which is the world's first.

According to reports, CASE is a new large-scale long-term energy storage technology, which uses air as the circulating working medium, stores electrical energy in the form of heat and cold energy, and then establishes a bridge between heat and electricity conversion through thermal cycle. Compared with mainstream energy storage technologies, CASE technology has the characteristics of low cost of ownership, small footprint, easy expansion, high safety and high comprehensive efficiency.

Of course, also pays attention to project construction. Carbon Cable Energy Storage noted that in 2023, a number of projects will start, including the demonstration application project of 100 MW/500 MWh all-vanadium flow energy storage power station in Panzhihua, Sichuan, and the innovation demonstration project of compressed air + lithium battery combined grid-side shared energy storage power station in Tongwei County, Dingxi City.

In the long run, with the acceleration of China's carbon reduction and the expansion of renewable energy installed capacity, the energy storage business of the five major power generation groups is also expected to continue to expand. For these companies, mastering energy storage technology can also help them accelerate their transformation.

Source: https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/q8kl8ivEvafT8pXq1UPebw

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