Shedd Aquarium Energy Storage System

Emergency Back up Power

Voltage: Nominal voltage 691V

Capacity: 277 kWh

Batteries: P40-24 Power Modules in a 27s10p configuration

Location: Chicago, IL

Function: frequency regulation, peak-load demand, and emergency back-up power

Operating Since: 2016

In 2016, Shedd Aquarium installed a 1 mega-watt lithium-ion battery in Chicago, IL. This 1MW peak-shaving application assists in minimizing the price of electricity for the large aquarium, which is based in part by surges of power consumption. This is accomplished by supplementing the peaks with energy stored in the battery system. As an extra benefit, the battery energy storage system is also used for back-up power.

Two 540kVA Schneider XC 540 – NA ESS inverter/chargers share a 1080kVA transformer with associated switch gear. Battery related items are contained in a 20-foot ISO container. The battery consists of 10 parallel strings.  Each string is comprised of 27 Valence Power Module’s (P40-24) in series each with its own battery management system (BMS). The battery is divided into two identical but independent subsystems of five strings and one inverter. Each independent subsystem connects the strings and inverter in parallel on a common DC bus.

Valence Technology manufactured the lithium-ion power modules for this energy storage solution, and in partnership with EaglePicher, provided engineering support helping to meet critical deadlines for this customized solution.

Here is what Shedd Aquarium shared about the project in their press release from 6/7/16:

Shedd Advances Clean Energy in Illinois with Installation of 1-Megawatt Lithium Ion Battery

Shedd Aquarium continues to lead the way in energy efficiency with the installation of a one-megawatt lithium ion battery at the aquarium – the largest building battery installation in the state of Illinois and the first of its kind to be installed at a zoo or aquarium in the nation.

©Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez

“Of the clean-energy technologies we’ve installed here at the aquarium, the installation of the one-megawatt battery is the largest project Shedd has undertaken to advance our clean-energy technologies,” said Bob Wengel, Vice President of Facilities at Shedd Aquarium.

In its pilot phase, the 60 thousand pound, $2 million battery and adjoining equipment – transformer and inverter skid – are connected to Shedd’s electrical distribution system, and will provide frequency regulation services, peak-load demand and the need for emergency back-up power. The systems are located on Shedd Aquarium’s loading dock, and will be viewable to passers-by and aquarium visitors from inside the South Abbott Oceanarium window.

©Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez

Sustainability is one of Shedd Aquarium’s core values, as (their) energy-use decisions have a direct impact on aquatic life around the world. By becoming an energy innovator, the aquarium can live its mission, inspiring people to make smart energy choices that protect the environment we share.

Read the full press release here.