A year after agreeing to work together, Japanese conglomerate Itochu and energy storage company Moixa have deployed 10,000 residential storage systems with a cumulative capacity of 100 MWh.
Moixa, which uses its Gridshare software to create a virtual power plant (VPP) by aggregating the batteries, claims the fleet of devices it manages in Japan is the largest operated by an artificial intelligence system worldwide.
The Gridshare software taps weather data, a residential load profile for each domestic battery and grid price signals to calculate when it should charge from the grid or discharge. Reducing bills by using such ‘smart batteries’ lessens strain on the grid simultaneously.
“We want to accelerate the global transition to a zero-carbon energy system,” said Moixa chief executive Simon Daniel. “Smart charging of batteries in homes and electric vehicles provides the critical tool to help achieve decarbonization by storing and shifting solar and wind resources. At the same time, it helps save money for consumers and reduce infrastructure cost.”
Moixa says it is in a good position to address the market for aggregating residential and electric vehicle (EV) batteries as it has been rolling out bi-directional products for years. The company already claims to be managing a gigawatt-hour scale portfolio of VPPs. Moixa says it has analyzed more than 50 terabytes of household consumption, generation pattern, weather prediction, energy tariff cost, battery performance and savings data to improve the accuracy of its predictions.
“Our customers are getting extra value from their batteries with Moixa’s GridShare software,” said Koji Hasegawa, general manager of the industrial chemicals department at Itochu. “It’s enabling them to maximize their solar resources and prepare for weather risk.”
The experience of managing such a large fleet of bi-directional batteries provides a blueprint for applying the technology to EVs. With Japan hosting the world’s third largest EV fleet, Moixa could tap another vibrant market. In March, Honda and Moixa signed a partnership to bring bi-directional EV charging to Europe by next year.