White Paper

Forget what you think you know about power plant controllers

Posted to PXiSE Energy Solutions in the Grid Professionals Group
image credit: PXiSE
Becky Wheeler's picture
Head of Marketing PXiSE Energy Solutions

Becky is simply a story-teller. But from a corporate point-of-view, she has more than a decade of experience in start-up, nonprofit, and global publicly held company environments spending the...

  • Member since 2020
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  • Apr 11, 2022
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As renewable energy becomes an increasingly important way for utilities to power their grids, project developers in power generation and EPC contract holders are looking for ways to optimize their renewable assets. Utility scale solar and wind sites can be a great way to produce large amounts of renewable energy for the grid. Developers in charge of these assets need to address concerns such as intermittent power delivery and aligning output with a local utility’s tariff structure, to ensure their investments will pay off. 

Adding energy storage to renewable sites can solve these issues, effectively turning developers’ power assets into hybrid power plants that combine generation and storage. However, energy storage alone can’t easily align hybridized plants with complex tariff structures and PPAs. 

With AI-powered software like a Power Plant Controller (PPC), developers and EPCs can maximize the revenue and output of their renewable assets, while also solving intermittency issues. Adding a PPC to a hybrid power plant gives their operators the tools they need to fully maximize the revenue generating potential of their assets. 

While a PPC is a cost-efficient way to optimize renewable energy assets, developers’ decision-making may be clouded by some common myths surrounding control tech. These can include:

  •  Relying on a myriad of control vendors is fine since they’ll work together
  • Software supplied with renewable assets is good enough
  • The installation order doesn’t matter
  • Legacy SCADA systems constrain the value of new systems
  • Battery capacities limit the capabilities of hybrid plants
  • Different use cases demand different batteries

 Developers and EPCs who are considering installing PPCs at their hybrid renewable plant are likely familiar with these myths. 

When it comes to current PPC technology, none of these preconceptions are true.  PXiSE Energy Solutions has deployed its PPC in large-scale renewable projects to maximize developers’ assets, helping them achieve greater revenue by turning their hybrid power plants into intelligent assets taken to their full potential. 

 Check out this whitepaper from Guidehouse where the authors walk through the myths above and disprove them with data and examples of existing PPC projects.

PXiSE Energy Solutions
PXiSE (pronounced ‘pice’) offers real-time and distributed grid control solutions that unlock the potential of distributed generation to improve reliability and increase renewable energy output while helping ensure system balance and power quality.
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Becky Wheeler's picture
Thank Becky for the Post!
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Michael Keller's picture
Michael Keller on Apr 25, 2022

Seems to me the objective should be to provide reasonably priced and reliable power, as opposed to lining the pockets of developers. The limitations of the equipment are routinely ignored by developers in their quest for a quick buck, with the equipment suffering premature failures that show up after the developers unload the assets after a few years. I’d be really leery of any “control system” whose logic is murky and obscure.

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