Energy Superhubs in West Midlands to support mass-scale rapid EV charging
Two grid-scale battery storage facilities are to be built in the West Midland, creating the power infrastructure for mass-scale, rapid electric vehicle charging.
The new sites, located in Coventry and Sandwell, are being developed by battery storage and EV charging specialist Pivot Power in partnership with global tech firm Wärtsilä and will collectively provide 100MW/200MWh of battery storage to support EV charging in the region.
Battery storage is crucial to meet the Government’s 2050 net zero climate change targets, providing flexible capacity to enhance the reliability of our electricity system and cost-effectively integrate more renewable generation.
The new sites are part of Pivot Power’s programme to build a national network of Energy Superhubs. The company, part of EDF Renewables since 2019, is looking to deliver to 2GW of battery storage by 2050, providing almost 10% of the battery storage it’s predicted the UK will need by the date, and creating charging infrastructure to support the estimated 36 million electric vehicles on the road by 2040.
Once complete, the new Energy Superhubs will form part of a portfolio of Britain’s most powerful EV charging sites.
The new sites will replicate Pivot Power’s Energy Superhub Oxford model, which is nearing completion and will provide a blueprint for towns and cities across the UK to cut carbon and improve air quality.
The hub, first announced two years ago, will have up to 10MW of power on site, initially powering 38 fast and ultra-rapid chargers.
Pivot Power is also building a 50MW battery storage facility in Kemsley, Kent. At both sites the battery storage systems will share their connection to the high-voltage electricity transmission network with a high-volume power connection, which will deliver large amounts of power for rapid EV charging to strategic locations in the local area, from public charging hubs to bus depots and commercial fleets.
As with the Oxford and Kent sites, Wärtsilä will supply the battery technology for both West Midlands projects, underpinned by its GEMS Digital Energy Platform. Construction of the battery storage systems is due to start at Sandwell in Q4 2021 and at Coventry in Q1 2022.
Matt Allen, CEO of Pivot Power, said: “This is the next step in our nationwide rollout of Energy Superhubs which will create the low carbon infrastructure needed to support the EV and renewable energy revolution. As part of EDF Renewables, Pivot Power’s purpose is to accelerate a net zero future where clean energy powers our lives. We are working hand in hand with local authorities to help them meet their climate and clean air pledges, so people can live and work in cleaner, more sustainable cities.”