An integrated energy storage scheme for a dispatchable solar and wind powered energy system
This research analyzed an integrated energy system that includes a novel configuration of wind and solar coupled with two storage methods to make both wind and solar sources dispatchable during peak demand, thereby enabling their broader use. Named DSWiSS for Dispatchable Solar and Wind Storage System, the proposed system utilizes compressed air energy storage (CAES) that is driven from wind energy and thermal storage supplied by concentrating solar thermal power (CSP) in order to achieve firm power from intermittent, renewable sources. Although DSWiSS mimics the operation of a typical CAES facility, the replacement of energy derived from fossil fuels with energy generated from renewable resources makes this system unique. West Texas is a useful geographical testbed for this system because it has abundant co-located wind and solar resources; it has competitive electricity markets, which give producers an economic incentive to store night-time wind energy in order to be sold during peak price times; and it has a significant number of locations with geological formations suitable for CAES. Through a thermodynamic and a levelized lifetime cost analysis, the power system performance and the cost of energy are estimated for this integrated wind-solar-storage system. We calculate that the combination of these components yields an energy efficiency of 46% for the CAES main power block, and the overall system cost is only slightly more expensive per unit of electricity generated than the current technologies employed today.