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Saft Signs Multi-Million Euro Energy Storage Contract for La Réunion Island

Saft is leading a consortium to build a 9 MWp photovoltaic (PV) power plant incorporating a megawatt-scale Li-ion energy storage system to ensure effective grid integration for solar PV power on a French island in the Indian Ocean

PARIS, Jan 14, 2014 (BUSINESS WIRE) — A consortium led by Saft, the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of advanced technology batteries for industry, has been awarded a multi-million euro project by Akuo Energy. This turnkey contract is realized in partnership with Ingeteam (Spain) – world leading manufacturer of power electronics and energy management systems– and Corex Solar (based in La Réunion) to build the Bardzour solar photovoltaic (PV) production and Li-ion (lithium-ion) energy storage system on the French island of La Réunion in the Indian Ocean. The project at Le Port will combine a 9 MWp power plant with a 9 MWh Intensium® Max+ 20E containerised battery system in the Consortium’s turnkey contract for a complete energy production and storage scheme. Delivery is planned during the first half of the year.

The Bardzour installation is the largest project announced in the group of 16 solar farm projects awarded in 2012 under the French CRE tender (cre:Commission de Régulation de l’Energie) for a total of 50 MW of solar PV production capacity coupled with storage in Corsica and French overseas departments.

Energy storage will play an important enabling role in further increasing the share of already cost-competitive renewable generation in non-interconnected island grids by making solar and wind power a predictable and reliable element within the overall energy mix and contributing to grid stability. The future market potential in French overseas territories is estimated as several hundreds of MW of storage.

“The announcement of this contract in this CRE global tender reinforces our vision that energy storage will play an important role in the NIZ (Non Interconnected Zones) and confirms our leadership position in this developing future market,” added François Bouchon, Director of Energy Storage at Saft. “We are delighted to have been selected for this major project on La Reunion Island that adds Akuo Energy to our growing portfolio of energy storage customers,” says Aurélie Tornier, Saft Energy Storage Sales Manager.

About Saft

Saft FR:SAFT +2.89% is a world leader in the design and manufacture of advanced technology batteries for industry. The Group is the world’s leading manufacturer of nickel batteries and primary lithium batteries for the industrial infrastructure and processes, transportation, civil and military electronics markets. Saft is the world leader in space and defence batteries with its Li-ion technologies which are also being deployed in the energy storage, transportation and telecommunication markets. Saft’s 3,800 employees present in 18 countries, its 15 manufacturing sites and extensive sales network all contribute to accelerating the Group’s growth for the future.

For more information, visit Saft at

Background information

Bardzour project background

La Réunion is a French island with a population of over 800,000 located in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar, about 200 km southwest of Mauritius, the nearest island. As an overseas department of France, the island is an outermost region of the European Union and part of the Eurozone.

France’s islands have high, and still growing, penetration of renewable energy resources (RES) – wind and PV – but the local grids have reached the limit of their integration capacity for intermittent renewables. The CRE has identified storage as an effective means to further increase the contribution of RES, hence increasing overall energy generation capacity while reducing CO2 emissions, stabilizing the grids and improving service and quality.

The Bardzour project will combine the output of a solar PV farm with energy storage to inject energy into the grid at a constant power limited to 40 percent of the rated PV power. This will establish solar PV as a predictable and reliable part of the island’s energy mix, with no need for additional backup generation to compensate for the intermittent nature of RES.

Bardzour project participants

The CRE is the French energy regulatory commission, an independent administrative authority created when the country’s energy markets were opened to competition in 2000. It is responsible for regulating the modernisation and development of the public electricity service in accordance with France’s Energy Code.

Akuo Energy has been awarded four projects in CRE’s tender – two in La Réunion and two in Corsica. Its aim is to implement and operate the PV power plants equipped with storage profitably, in compliance with technical specifications setting complex rules for the quality, profile and predictability of injected PV power. The Bardzour solar farm will be installed around a prison. Its operation will allow social reintegration of prisoners within the framework provided by agricultural energy generation.

Li-ion energy storage

Saft is responsible for providing the Bardzour energy storage system, installation, commissioning and training as well as a full service contract to ensure its performance and availability.

The 9 MWh energy storage system will comprise 9 Saft Intensium® Max+ 20E containers. Each container houses 17 racks of Saft’s Synerion® energy storage modules, battery management, thermal management and safety management systems. The system has the flexibility to provide both power and energy under a very demanding charge/discharge pattern and, being delivered in a standard container, is easy to install and integrate.

The control system is key to ensure proper management of the energy flows within the system and to the grid, according to very precise technical specifications. As deviations are immediately penalized, Akuo Energy will depend on accurate power management and stable long term performance of the system in order to ensure revenues and ROI (return on investment) according to its plans.

Ingeteam is responsible for providing the power electronics equipment, the energy management System, strategy coding within PLC, MV switchgear, installation, commissioning and training as well as a full service contract to ensure its performance and availability.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:


Saft Jill Ledger, Corporate Communications and Institutional Relations Director+33 1 49 93 17 77; orMarie-Christine Guihéneuf, IBG Communication Manager,+33 1 49 93 17 16; or Six Degrees Andrew Bartlett, +44 (0) 118 900 0860; or U.S. Press Agency: French/West/Vaughan Chris Shigas, 919-277-1167; or Brunswick Julien Trosdorf, +33 1 53 96 83 83Benoît Grange, +33 1 53 96 83 83

Copyright Business Wire 2014


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