Mitsui & Co., Ltd, Komaihaltec Inc., and Fuji Electric Co., Ltd., have completed feasibility study and successfully implemented a pilot project of wind power and smart-grid system in an isolated township of Ust-Kamchatsk in the Russian Far East in cooperation with Russian state-owned power company RAO Energy Systems of East (RAO ESE). In 2014 the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) selected the project for demonstration and promotion of technologies and systems for improving global energy efficiency. Construction of the wind power plant (three 300KW turbines) and grid stabilization system (electric boilers for utilization of excess capacity) began in October same year. Construction was completed in 2015, operations began in January 2016.
RAO ESE is the main supplier of power and heat to communities in several regions across the vast Russian Far East and Eastern Siberia. In remote off-grid areas, where the cost of fuel transportation has continued to mount for many years, cost cutting measures have become an issue of critical importance. Mitsui, Komaihaltec and Fuji Electric will conduct a one-year demonstration, during which they will verify specifications for cold climate-resistant wind turbine generators and test the micro-grid system, to ensure smooth operation and interconnection between the wind power plant, existing diesel station and heat generation facilities. Another objective of the project is to verify the system’s effect on power and heat balance in the community and confirm the potential for widespread implementation of such technologies in remote areas, including those with harsh climate conditions.
In Russia there are some several hundred off-grid areas, which receive electricity from local power sources. The project in Ust-Kamchatsk has the potential to become a base for the introduction of wind power and micro-grid systems across many of Russia’s isolated communities. Mitsui, Komaihaltec and Fuji Electric also aim to develop a model for next-generation products centered on smart-gird communities, and, at the same time, hope to expand and deepen their business presence in Russia.