Is Storage Profitable for Large Scale Renewable Integration?



Optimally designing and operating storage devices to integrate large scale renewables is a difficult problem, due to its dependency on several unavoidably intercorrelated factors: the choice of storage devices, storage sizing, storage operation, electricity pricing schemes, and the time scale in the electricity market.  Joint optimization of these factors is complex, time consuming, and non-causal. On the other hand, decoupling these factors is still an open problem. We aim at establishing a framework to optimally design a storage system with maximum profitability. This is achieved, first, by fixing some factors, gaining insights on the impact of those factors and then incrementally adding complexity. We discuss this framework in the context of three approaches: joint optimization of design and operation, simulation, and analytical design. In this presentation, I will talk about these three techniques, their strengths, and the interesting new insights we gain on the profitability of storage devices using these techniques and real data traces. Finally, I will talk about future work and how we can complement our framework using an electricity market simulator such as PowerTAC.