21 September 2023

BESS 101: How Do Battery Energy Storage Systems Work?


As our world progressively moves towards greener energy solutions, understanding the technologies that enable a smoother transition becomes crucial. One of these essential technologies is the Battery Energy Storage System (BESS). But what is it, and how does it operate? Let's dive into the fundamentals of BESS.


What is a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS)?


In simple terms, a Battery Energy Storage System, or BESS, facilitates the storage and release of energy. It serves as a buffer, storing energy either from renewable sources like solar and wind or directly from the main grid. The stored energy can later be dispatched back into the grid during periods when demand is high or when there's limited energy generation.


How does BESS support renewable energy?


Renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, are inherently variable. The sun doesn't always shine, and the wind doesn't always blow. This variability can create challenges in balancing the electricity grid. Enter BESS. By charging batteries during times of high energy generation and discharging them during periods of low generation or peak demand, BESS can effectively iron out the grid's fluctuations. As a result, the grid becomes more stable, and we can utilise a higher proportion of renewable energy sources.



What does a typical BESS infrastructure look like?


Visually, the core components of BESS often resemble shipping containers. Inside these modules, you'll find batteries, air conditioning units to keep the system cool, and inverter units that convert the stored energy for use on the grid. Additionally, BESS requires specific infrastructural components, including:


  • Access tracks: To easily access and maintain the modules.
  • Cabling: To connect the system to the grid.
  • Fencing: To protect and secure the installation.
  • CCTV cameras: For added security and surveillance.


The integration of these elements ensures the efficient and secure operation of the BESS.


The Future of BESS


As we transition to a future dominated by renewable energy, technologies like BESS become indispensable. With the promise of enhanced energy stability and increased efficiency of renewables, BESS will undeniably play a critical role in shaping our sustainable future.


In conclusion, BESS not only serves as a bridge between the variability of renewable sources and the constant demand of the grid but also signifies a monumental step towards a sustainable and reliable energy landscape. As advancements in this technology continue, our reliance on traditional, non-renewable energy sources is poised to decrease, paving the way for a greener future for all.