Florida public power utility Lakeland Electric is preparing to launch a pilot project that will use batteries to store solar power and potentially curb peak demand and lower customer bills.

Lakeland Electric is setting up a battery storage project that consists of two 6-kilowatt inverters and lithium-ion batteries that will be able to provide 10 kW for 3.3 hours at 5 kW continuous output, according to Darrin McCorvey, Lakeland Electric’s smart grid operations manager.

“The goal is to gain a better understanding of the potential of this technology, including curbing peak demand and financial savings,” McCorvey said. “Battery storage units such as this work well when integrated with photovoltaic systems, which will charge the units during off peak times and allow them to discharge to the customer during mid- and on-peak times.”

Based on its residential demand tariff and location usage analysis, Lakeland Electric expects that the battery unit could save a customer $1,152 a year, according to McCorvey.

The batteries are set to be commissioned at a city-owned tennis facility on December 20.

California-based Sunverge Energy in late November announced that it had signed an agreement with Lakeland Electric related to the project.

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