Rho Motion, the energy transition and electric vehicle research house, today released the global record-breaking figures for battery energy storage entering operation this past month. In February 2024, 9GWh of battery storage went live across both the grid and behind-the-meter (BTM) markets globally- a year-on-year increase of 110% compared to February 2023. 

The news comes as the UK’s Prime Minister today announced the Government’s intention to build new gas power plants. The battery storage in the UK grid more than doubled in 2023, bringing its capacity to over 5GWh. The pipeline promises over 30GWh to come online in the next three years. However, the storage in the UK typically ranges from 1-2 hour duration, which is mostly suitable for handling short mismatches of power supply and demand.

Iola Hughes, head of research at Rho Motion, said:

“The battery energy storage market gets off to a record-breaking start, with over 20GWh of new battery storage installed so far this year. This is more than double that installed in the same period in 2023. A further 200GWh of storage is planned to enter operation globally over the next few months next year making this the fastest growing battery demand market.

“The announcement today from the UK Government is evidence more work is needed in the storage sector, with particular focus on longer duration storage, for a green transition to occur.”

Meanwhile, globally, the grid market saw just over 6GWh entered operation across 41 locations, by comparison to just 1.8GWh in February last year. The largest stationary energy storage (BESS) project to go live in February is the Saudi Arabia Red Sea New City project at 1,300MWh. A further six projects over 200MWh entered operation, all in China. Larger projects are becoming more common in the UK with over 30 projects larger than 500MWh in the pipeline.

Of the operational projects in February, nearly all were lithium-ion batteries. One vanadium flow battery and a 1MWh sodium ion project went live in China. The sodium ion project joins just a handful of live batteries, but Rho Motion experts are predicting more sodium ion projects to be deployed this year representing the gradual diversification of the market.

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