Greek Island Will Run Exclusively on Wind and Solar Power

by | Aug 21, 2018

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Tilos, a remote Dodecanese island that lies between Kos and Rhodes, is on track to become a self-sufficient energy hub capable of exporting clean electricity to neighbouring small islands.

Using a grant of 11 million euros (12.69 USD) from the European Commission, as part of the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation push, the plan is to transform Tilos into the Mediterranean’s first green energy island.

Named TILOS — Technology Innovation for the Local Scale Optimum Integration of Battery Energy Storage — the project uses a prototype battery system that improves storage of the excess energy generated until it’s needed.

According to the European Commission’s website, the TILOS project is testing the integration of an innovative local-scale, molten-salt battery (NaNiCl2) energy-storage system in the real grid environment on the island of Tilos (Greece).

It is planned to test smart grid control system and provision of multiple services, ranging from microgrid energy management, maximisation of RES penetration and grid stability, to export of guaranteed energy amounts and provision of ancillary services to the main grid. The battery system is used to support both stand-alone and grid-connected operations, while ensuring its interoperability with the rest of microgrid components and demand side management.

Currently, Tilos gets its energy from an underwater cable that runs from Kos to the island of Nisiros and on to Tilos. That creates an erratic, outage-prone service that routinely breaks appliances and has forced many businesses to rely on diesel generators.

This new project will use solar and wind power to generate enough electricity for the 550 residents who live on Tilos all year-round and thousands of tourists who visit every summer.

In the coming weeks, a hybrid power plant consisting of a single wind turbine, a photovoltaic solar panel station and battery storage system is expected to start meeting the daily electricity needs of between 250 and 300 households.

According to reports, the system will generate and store enough power to supply approximately three-quarters of the island’s annual demand, with any excess power passed to other islands in the area.


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