FPL makes progress on battery installations at solar-powered facility

Florida Power & Light crews have installed the first battery modules and more than two-thirds of the containers for its massive Manatee solar-storage hybrid project.

The NextEra Energy-owned utility has installed 100 of 132 containers for the FPL Manatee Energy Storage Center. The plant will have 409 MW/900 MWh of capacity, enough to power 329,000 homes for more than two hours.

Those batteries will be charged by the existing Manatee Solar Energy Center, thus offering grid predictability and emissions reductions avoiding power plant generation for the system.

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“With one milestone after another, FPL is following through on its steadfast commitment to make Florida a leader in sustainability and resiliency as we consistently deliver America’s best energy value – electricity that’s not just clean and reliable, but also affordable,” said FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy. “In June, we said goodbye to coal by dismantling FPL’s last coal plant in Florida just as we surpassed 40% of the way toward completing our ’30-by-30’ plan to install 30 million solar panels by 2030. Soon, the world’s largest solar-powered battery will begin serving customers, and we’ll turn our attention to an innovative green hydrogen pilot project – which could unlock the potential for a 100% carbon-free energy future.”

Each battery module weighs more than 200 pounds and is capable of storing an amount of solar energy equivalent to roughly 2,000 iPhone batteries. Combined, the battery system will be equivalent to approximately 100 million iPhone batteries. In addition to installing the project’s first battery modules, FPL announced the company has already installed 100 of 132 energy storage containers and set all 132 of the project’s inverters.

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The original construction to build the solar center started in 2019.

“With more than 12 million solar panels installed and more than 40 solar energy centers in operation, FPL is building on its rapid solar expansion with the world’s largest solar-powered battery,” said FPL Vice President of Development Matt Valle, who delivered today’s construction update. “But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. FPL is implementing innovative battery storage projects across the state, transforming Florida’s transportation landscape with more than 1,000 EV chargers and partnering with universities and municipalities on battery systems that leverage cutting-edge microgrid technology.”

Ultimately, the battery system will consist of 132 energy storage containers organized across a 40-acre plot of land or the equivalent of 30 football fields. Each container will hold roughly 400 battery modules.

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