UW Battery Electrical Energy Storage System (BESS) Request for Information

Posted: April 13, 2017 - 09:37 / FOA-RFI-RFP
This is a two-tier solicitation. Bidders interested in submitting a proposal in response to any subsequent RFP must submit a response to this RFI by the deadline outlined below.
Purpose: The University of Washington (UW) Department of Electrical Engineering seeks to install a Li-Ion battery electrical energy storage system (BESS) for the purposes of demonstrating and developing advanced BESS control algorithms that support electric grid operations and campus energy efficiency. The purpose of this RFI is to gather information from potential suppliers on the hardware and software characteristics of commercially available BESS. This BESS should be based on well-proven, safe battery and energy conversion technologies that can be installed within an existing building.  
The supplier is expected to provide an external software interface based on the Modular Energy Storage Architecture (MESA) communications standard. This interface must allow UW not only to monitor the operation of the battery but also to control its charging and discharging using software that UW will develop.  The University of Washington researchers will apply their expertise in data analytics, control and optimization to develop techniques, tools, and strategies for the control of this BESS. In particular, they intend
  • to Demonstrate advanced control algorithms, developed by UW, that optimize the use of the BESS in conjunction with the campus distribution grid.
  • Collect grid and energy storage system performance data to evaluate and quantify the benefits created by a grid-integrated energy storage system while being controlled by different algorithms.
Scope of Work: The purpose of this Request for Information is gather information from experienced Suppliers who can provide a BESS system that meets the following system requirements: 
The system the UW wishes to purchase must include:
  • A Lithium-Ion battery 
  • A battery management system (BMS) integrated with this battery
  • A power conversion system with its control and communication software
  • A fully accessible MESA-compliant communication and control interface
  • A complete description of this communication and control interface 
Functional Requirements
The BESS solution should conform to the following system requirements:
1. Electrical connection to building AC system:
a. 3-phase, 4-wire 480 VAC connection
b. Compatible with existing transformer: 13.8kV Delta primary / 480V Grounded Wye secondary
2. Communications interface: Modular Energy Storage Architecture (MESA) compliant.
a. Information on MESA-device protocols can be found at www.mesastandards.org.
b. Components will integrate with an external control system via the MESA-device standards.  ESS components may have a single interface to an external controller or there may be separate interfaces for the power conversion system (PCS) and the battery management system (BMS).
c. Communication protocol is Modbus/TCP (Ethernet).
3. Physical dimensions:
a. Can be assembled inside a building using a pallet jack (no forklift access)
b. Floor mounted with anchoring bolts 
c. Total electrolyte weight must be less than 1000 lbs.
4. Energy Storage system boundaries are defined as:
a. Inverter 480 VAC output terminal
b. Auxiliary power input: terminals within ESS system components
c. Grounding points on ESS components
5. Fire suppression system (Optional)
Read more here.