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Salt River Project, NextEra partner to add energy storage at solar plant

Salt River Project is partnering with a NextEra Energy subsidiary to add a 100 MW battery to its existing 100 MW solar plant, Saint Solar.

Salt River Project is partnering with a NextEra Energy unit to add a 100 MW battery to its existing 100 MW solar plant, Saint Solar.

The battery, expected to be operational in mid-2023, will provide four hours of capacity.

Saint Solar, located in Coolidge, Arizona, is owned and operated by a unit of NextEra Energy. Salt River Project (SRP), which serves as an electric utility for the Phoenix metro area, currently uses the plant to deliver solar energy to 11 business customers, including the cities of Chandler, Mesa, and Phoenix.

Under the agreement, NextEra will provide its Optos analytics software for three years. Optos uses artificial intelligence and is intended to help companies optimize renewable energy use.

This is not the first time SRP has collaborated with NextEra Energy on Arizona-based solar and storage projects. The Sonoran Energy Center, to be located south of Buckeye, will be roughly 260 MW solar power system with 1 GWh of energy storage capacity. It is expected to be one of the largest solar-charged battery projects in the state. 

And Storey Energy Center, to be built in Coolidge, will be an 88 MW solar power and energy storage system. Both plants will be owned and operated by NextEra and are expected to become operational by mid-2023.

Last September, SRP placed into service a 25 MW storage facility at its Bolster Substation in Peoria, Arizona, west of phoenix. The battery system consists of a series of Tesla Megapacks that are connected directly to SRP’s energy grid.

For more on the Bolster Substation project, see 10 notable battery storage projects that went live in 2021.

The latest addition at Saint Solar brings SRP’s total battery storage commitment to nearly 500 MW by 2023. Last summer the utility announced a commitment to add 2,025 MW of utility-scale solar energy by 2025.

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