Ten Redflow ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries – which have a ten year warranty and are great for use in high ambient temperatures – are storing 100kWh of energy to provide a village in mountainous northern Thailand with electricity – for the first time. Ban Pha Dan, 70km south of Chiang Mai is surrounded by a wildlife reserve where power poles are forbidden – consequently access to the national grid has never been an option.
The installation – which is backed by the Thai Government – consists of a 19.8kWp solar array; energy from which is harvested by five Victron BlueSolar 150/85 MPPT solar charge controllers.
30kW of power is available to the school, village hall, and temple, thanks to three Victron Quattro 48/10000/140 Inverter-Chargers working in parallel. Lithium batteries deliver power to the houses.
The well proven plug-in compatibility between Redflow battery technology nested within a Victron installation is seamless – and thanks to a Color Control GX, interrogation, control and management of all devices is available at the touch of a button via the CCGX screen, or remotely using the free to use Victron Remote Management Portal.
Thailand’s Energy Minister Dr Siri Jirapongphan visited Ban Pha Dan to inspect the new microgrid and energy storage system in mid-January. Dr Jirapongphan said that non-fossil energy would account for 35 per cent of Thailand’s total energy capacity by 2037.
Redflow Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris said ‘The Ban Pha Dan deployment provided a compelling model for remote communities in both developing and developed countries. This solar-powered microgrid with energy storage shows how to provide environmentally-friendly energy for remote communities.’
The flow batteries and Victron equipment were installed by TSUS, Redflow’s long term partner in Thailand. TSUS has extensive experience in the design and build of renewable energy systems in both the public and private sectors.
Among the advantages of zinc-bromine flow batteries are: 100 per cent daily depth of discharge, tolerance of high ambient temperatures, a simple recycling path, no propensity for thermal runaway and sustained energy delivery throughout their operating life.
Tim Harris says: ‘Just like mobile telephony leapfrogged fixed-line telecommunications in developing countries, microgrids can deliver the benefits of modern technology without the massive infrastructure spend required by grid-based energy utilities. Redflow believes microgrids present a strong market opportunity for our zinc-bromine flow batteries.’