Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) is planning to build “the world’s largest solar-powered battery” to replace a pair of 1970’s-era natural gas power generators in the state.
The 409MW/900MWh Manatee Energy Storage Centre (MESC), which will receive power from FPL’s existing solar power plant in Manatee County, is expected to start operation in late 2021.
FPL is also planning a series of smaller battery installations, solar power plants, and efficiency upgrades to existing combustion turbines across the state, in order to replace 1.6GW of generating capacity.
At 400MW/900MWh, the MESC would dwarf the current “world’s largest” battery, the 100MW/129MWh Hornsdale Power Reserve in South Australia, which was supplied by Tesla and is owned and operated by Neoen.
“This is a monumental milestone in realising the full benefits of solar power”, said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL. “Even as we aggressively execute on our plan to install 30 million solar panels by 2030, we never lose sight of finding innovative ways to bring our customers the benefits of solar energy.”
Manatee County commissioner Priscilla Trace said: “The way we generate, store, transport and use electricity is being reinvented. New technology, like large-scale battery storage, is a critical step on the path to a cleaner, cheaper and more efficient energy future.”
FPL has not yet announced the battery technology that the MESC will utilise.