Virginia State University Enters Into Battery Partnership - Smart Energy Decisions

Distributed Energy Resources, GHG Emissions, Utilities  -  November 20, 2023

Virginia State University Enters Into Battery Partnership

Virginia State University (VSU) and Dominion Energy Virginia entered into a partnership to develop a battery storage project that would provide backup power to VSU's Multi-Purpose Center (MPC). 

The MPC, located on the VSU campus, hosts athletic events, conferences, concerts and other community events.

The initiative is one of several proposed to the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC). These projects will test three alternatives to lithium-ion batteries that could discharge power for significantly longer durations.

Dominion Energy enlisted California-based EnerVenue to manufacture the 1.5-megawatt battery that will be installed on the university's Ettrick campus, located in southern Chesterfield County. EnerVenue's Energy Storage Vessels use metal-hydrogen technology that can discharge energy for up to 10 hours.

Dominion Energy plans to test two other pioneering battery storage technologies, including one that can discharge power for up to 100 hours, at another location in Henrico County.

"These projects could be game changers for how we store energy and deliver it to our customers," said Ed Baine, President of Dominion Energy Virginia in a statement. "With longer-duration batteries, we can store energy from renewables for longer periods of time so it's available when our customers need it the most. We're thrilled to partner with Virginia State University on this cutting-edge project."

Virginia State plans to use the backup battery as a hands-on teaching tool for students pursuing careers in the energy sector. The university will develop a curriculum for students in VSU's College of Engineering and Technology.

If approved by the SCC, the project is expected to be in operation by the end of 2027.


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