Dubai’s largest solar plant to host pilot storage project based on NGK’s NAS Batteries

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Japanese ceramics company and NAS storage provider, NGK Insulators Ltd has supplied 1.2 MW of its large-scale NAS (Network Attached Storage) battery systems for a demonstration project at the 1 GW Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, the largest solar project in the United Arab Emirates – and the Middle East – to date.

NGK said that the batteries, which are now being installed at the solar facility, have an aggregate storage capacity of 7.2 MWh. The devices will be tested at the first section of the big solar park – a 13 MW plant built by U.S. thin film module manufacturer, First Solar in late 2013. The NAS battery will be used to stabilize fluctuations in solar power output, plus other grid applications, including energy time-shifting and frequency control, NGK said in its statement.

The Japanese provider also claims that its NAS battery is the only storage technology that has proven operational success in the Middle East. “The NAS battery is a high-temperature battery and thus uniquely suited for operation in locations with extreme ambient temperatures, such as the heat of the Middle East,” it said.

Operations are scheduled to commence at the end of this summer.

As for it its NAS Batteries business, NGK reported in its 2017 full fiscal year financial results that a deficit is expected to continue, due to low sales, although demand will increase, based on domestic users. “While it will take time for the development of full-scale demand, the potential needs are high,” it said

In November 2017, NGK entered into a partnership with French conglomerate and inverter producer, Schneider Electric to explore global opportunities to jointly market NGK’s NAS battery. A year earlier, experts from both companies conducted integration testing of the interface between the NAS battery and Schneider Electric’s ES Box power conversion system for energy storage at NGK’s factory in Komaki City, Aichi Prefecture, central Japan.