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Meet Our People 04-12-2023

3 min read

Accelerating domestic installation of grid storage batteries to achieve carbon neutrality

Hi, I’m Yuki Numajiri, Sales Specialist for Grid Automation’s Grid Edge Solutions at Hitachi Energy in Japan.

I oversee technical sales of grid edge solutions1, including grid-scale battery energy storage system at Hitachi Energy. In my previous job, as a technical representative for mainly Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS), I engaged in systems that included power conversion equipment and storage batteries. In 2021, I moved to my current position at Hitachi Energy in Japan because the grid-scale battery energy storage system business is a highlighted field in the energy industry, and I wanted to utilize my knowledge. Currently, I am working with Hitachi, Ltd. to develop energy storage plants in Japan that use Hitachi Energy's grid-scale battery energy storage system.

The power sector is facing major transformations to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Currently, renewable energy sources account for about 23 percent2 of Japan's power supply, but the 6th Strategic Energy Plan announced by the government sets a target of raising this to 38 percent3 by 2030. On the other hand, thermal power generation, which emits large amounts of CO2, must reduce its share. Solar and wind power, the mainstream renewable energy sources, have unstable output, and today, the stability of the power system is maintained by thermal power generation, which has high balancing power. The increase in renewable energy and the decrease in thermal power generation are expected to destabilize power grids in the future, and securing balancing power to compensate for this is an urgent issue. Grid-scale battery energy storage systems are expected to become widely used in Japan because of their ability to quickly supply balancing power in response to fluctuations in power grids. They are seen as a promising solution for securing balancing power. As Hitachi Group, the business of grid-scale battery energy storage systems is positioned as a priority field. This year, with Hitachi, Ltd., we received our first order for a system for a power storage plant4.

Hitachi Energy's battery storage systems have a proven track record of installation in many overseas countries, which are ahead of Japan in the spread of renewable energies. In addition, our systems provide solutions for energy storage plants and combinations with renewable energy, distributed energy resources, and even microgrids. Grid-scale battery energy storage systems are still in a developing field even from a global perspective, but in Europe, the US, and Australia, they are being increasingly installed ahead of Japan. Domestic technological requirements are currently being carefully considered while keeping a close eye on the situation overseas. For this reason, I believe that our company's ability to apply cutting-edge technology established in overseas countries ahead of us in the field of grid-scale battery energy storage systems to Japan is one of our great strengths. I am Proud to be Hitachi Energy because it is very rewarding to be a part of this process. In addition, Hitachi Energy has announced the acquisition of a Spanish supplier of power conversion and control solutions5. We believe this will strengthen our portfolio of grid-scale battery energy storage systems, and we look forward to Hitachi Energy's further progress in this field.

Goal 7 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) states “Affordable and Clean Energy.” This means “ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all.” Our efforts toward carbon neutrality, where our battery storage systems can contribute, are aimed at the same future as Goal 7 of the SDGs.

As a member of the Hitachi Group, I am dedicated in my daily work to contribute to major goals set globally, such as the SDGs.