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Jamaica selects ABB for supply of microgrid and storage system

CTBR Staff Writer Published 01 March 2018

Swiss electrical engineering company ABB has agreed to supply microgrid and storage system in Jamaica to help integrate renewable energy sources such as solar and wind.

The $21.6m (J$2.7bn) order has been placed by Jamaica Public Service (JPS), the power utility company in the island.

This system from ABB, which includes ABB Ability digital platform, is claimed to reduce the island’s dependency on fossil fuels, thus lowering its carbon footprint.

ABB’s microgrid is a 24.5MW facility and energy storage system is expected to enable power availability when solar and wind sources are interrupted due to cloud cover, reduced wind or other factors.

This energy storage system will be installed at JPS Hunts Bay Power Plant Substation and is scheduled to be completed by next April.

 ABB power grids division president Claudio Facchin said: “This innovative solution reinforces ABB’s position as a partner of choice in enabling a stronger, smarter and greener grid.”

Jamaica is located about 500 miles southeast of Cuba and the island’s hotels, restaurants and homes heavily rely on imported fossil fuels, which are costly and subject to volatility.

As a tourist destination, the island’s population increases from 3 million to 5 million during peak tourist season, resulting in a surge in the energy demand.

The island has already integrated 160MW of renewable energy into the power grid, which accounts for about one quarter of its total generation capacity.

JPS president and CEO Emanuel DaRosa said: “This is one of the most significant projects to be undertaken by JPS this year.  This project will be a model for other countries in the Caribbean and even outside of this region. 

“Being able to respond flexibly to the changes in generation demand and supply, will redound to a meaningful improvement in the quality of customer service experienced across the board.”

Image: Munro Wind Farm in St. Elizabeth Jamaica. Photo: Courtesy of Jamaica Public Service Company.