A1 Journal article (refereed), original research

The role that battery and water storage play in Saudi Arabia’s transition to an integrated 100% renewable energy power system

Publication Details
Authors: Caldera Upeksha, Breyer Christian
Publication year: 2018
Language: English
Related Journal or Series Information: Journal of Energy Storage
Volume number: 17
Start page: 299
End page: 310
Number of pages: 12
ISSN: 2352-152X
eISSN: 2352-1538
JUFO-Level of this publication: 1
Open Access: Not an Open Access publication


Saudi Arabia can transition to a 100% renewable energy system by 2040 including the integration of the
power, desalination and non-energetic industrial gas sectors. Single-axis tracking PV and battery storage
contribute the highest to the final LCOE of the system. By 2050, single-axis tracking PV accounts for 79% of
the total electricity generation. Battery storage accounts for 30% of the total electricity demand. Battery
storage and desalination plants provide additional flexibility to the energy system. Through sensitivity
analysis, it is found that decreasing the capex of desalination plants results in lower full load hours (FLH)
and a decrease in battery storage output. This results in lower energy system costs. However, the SWRO
capex has to be reduced by 50% to achieve a reduction of 1% in SWRO FLH and a 2.1% in the annualised
energy system costs. This is because it is preferable to run the expensive SWRO plants in baseload
operation for total energy system cost reasons. Flexibility to the energy system can be provided at a lower
cost by solar PV and battery storage than by SWRO plants and water storage. Decreasing battery capex
reduces the flexibility of desalination plants further, increases single-axis tracking PV capacities,
decreases wind and CCGT capacities, and ultimately results in lower LCOE. These insights enable to
establish the least cost pathway for Saudi Arabia to achieve net zero emissions by mid-century.

Last updated on 2019-13-03 at 12:00