The world's largest solar battery goes online
Kimberly Kuizon reports
PARRISH, Florida. – Located on 40 acres in Manatee County, Florida Power and Light is almost done building the world's largest solar-powered battery.
“It's a long-term way to get carbon out of our system,” said Matt Valle.
The battery will draw energy from locations like the Manatee Solar Energy Center during the day and then power 329,000 households in Manatee and Desoto counties at night and during times when the sun is not as bright.
“There are approximately 132 containers stretching over 40 acres that capture solar energy in the system, day in and day out, and later balance it to meet demand,” said Matt Valle, FP & L's vice president of development.
Each unit houses special batteries. Together they correspond to 100 million iPhone batteries. The website has a lifespan of 40 years.
It is a step that FP&L is taking to continue the movement towards clean energy.
Once the battery is operational, the fossil fuel power plant in Parrish will be taken offline.
“Over the life of these investments and the retirement of this system, we will save 1 million tons of carbon,” said Valle.
FP&L said customers will see some savings too, but reducing the company's carbon footprint is the real benefit.
“We believe that FPL, like other utilities, must go to a world where we do not emit carbon. This battery is key to taking intermittent renewable resources and bringing them into our grid over time, ”said Valle.
The battery is scheduled to go into operation at the end of the year.