Adding batteries to a microgrid isn’t as simple as sticking a nine-volt into a smoke detector. Whether you’re designing a new microgrid or changing an existing one, you must account for many interacting variables. Your electricity demand changes seasonally and even hourly. The availability and cost of solar, diesel, battery power, and grid electricity also vary. Each piece of hardware--even each brand of each piece--has its own capabilities and limits. How do you know if adding batteries to your microgrid will work, both for your system and your wallet?
This blog post will show you how to simulate Aquion batteries in HOMER, one of the tools we use to model customer systems.
What is HOMER?
HOMER (Hybrid Optimization of Multiple Energy Resources) is microgrid optimization software. Many technical and non-technical decision makers in the PV and energy storage industries use it to simulate the operation of power systems. The models can include a combination of renewable power sources, storage, and fossil-based generation, either through a local generator or a power grid.
How do I use HOMER for Aquion batteries?
Aquion Energy’s technical team has developed two different HOMER models, one for the S-Line Battery Stack and one for the M-Line Battery Module. To request these models, contact us at [email protected].
Once you have received the file containing the two models, import them into your personal HOMER library and follow these steps:
- Open the file sent by Aquion Energy.
- Click on the S-line Stack in the “Schematic” window on the top left.
- Click on the “Copy To Library” button.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the M-Line Module.
- Go to your library by clicking on the “Library” icon on the top banner. You should see an S-line stack and an M-line module listed under Components/Battery.
Congrats! You are now all set to use Aquion batteries in your HOMER simulations.
After you add Aquion batteries to any system, make sure that the battery price in HOMER is accurate. You can check official prices with your local Aquion distributor. Having the right price in your simulation is key to accurate calculation of the system’s levelized cost of electricity (LCOE).
I finished my simulation! What next?
For simple residential projects, you can contact your authorized Aquion distributor and inquire about pricing and delivery.
For large or complex systems, we recommend sending your HOMER file to Aquion Energy’s Application Engineering team for review ([email protected]). HOMER is not a sizing tool, and we use different tools to more accurately size the battery systems for each project. We are here to help you and make sure you are successful in your energy storage projects.