Double Project Energisation, Including, Europe’s Joint Largest Battery Energy Storage System

By: | October 17th, 2023

UK-based investment Company Harmony Energy Income Trust plc (“HEIT”) has successfully energised the 99 MW / 198 MWh Bumpers Battery Energy Storage System (“BESS”) project in Buckinghamshire – making it the joint largest BESS (by MWh) in Europe.

The successful energisation of the Bumpers project means HEIT now owns two of the three largest operating BESS sites in Europe (by MWh), following the energisation of its award-winning 98 MW / 196 MWh Pillswood BESS project in Yorkshire in November 2022. 

In addition to the successful energisation of the Bumpers project, HEIT’s 49.5MW / 99 MWh Little Raith BESS, located in Scotland, was also energised in October. 

The double-energisation marks a significant step forward in the transition to clean energy technologies and takes HEIT’s total operational capacity to 277.5 MW / 555 MWh across five projects (c.70% of the entire portfolio based on total MW capacity). 

Both projects are 2-hr duration BESS, utilising Tesla’s two-hour Megapack 2XL system. They can store enough energy to power c.450,000 homes for two hours (in aggregate). The projects are operated through Autobidder, Tesla’s algorithmic trading platform, which has demonstrated a strong track record with HEIT, having been operated across its Pillswood, Broadditch and Farnham sites.

The projects will provide critical balancing services to the GB electricity grid network whilst also enabling the replacement of fossil fuels with renewable energy. An increased number of BESS projects reduces the need for National Grid to curtail wind farm operations during periods when renewable generation exceeds demand. BESS stores that excess power and discharges it back onto the network when the wind has lessened, resulting in a more efficient and reliable renewable energy grid. 

Max Slade, Director of the investment manager of HEIT, said: “We want to be at the forefront of a greener and more sustainable future, and the energisation of the Bumpers and Little Raith projects is another significant step in the right direction for achieving Net Zero and our full portfolio build out. Like all our projects, these aren’t supported by taxpayer subsidy. 

“A massive congratulations to our incredible delivery team and partners who have once again delivered ahead of schedule despite the challenging global supply chain environment. We would like to give particular thanks to Tesla and Wilson Power Solutions on both projects, UK Power Networks and Keltbray on Bumpers, and RJ McLeod, IUS and SP Energy Networks on Little Raith for their efforts in delivering this major accomplishment.”

In addition to the carbon emissions avoidance benefits of its operations, HEIT aims to enhance biodiversity across its sites.

Harmony Energy’s, Head of Sustainability, Lucie Peralta Agass, discussed the sustainability initiatives at the Bumpers site: “We aim to ensure all our sites are having a positive local impact through activities such as tree planting and community funds.

“Sustainability is core to our values. Being a truly sustainable business means delivering our renewable energy infrastructure projects in harmony with nature and the local community.”

The energisation of the Bumpers and Little Raith projects further solidifies Harmony Energy Income Trusts’ position as a leader in the GB renewable energy sector, with the company now having five operating BESS projects across its GB portfolio, and a further three projects due to complete construction in the coming six months. 

Ashton Henning

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