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Exide’s Portuguese Factory Goes Live With Solar Installation

Exide now has a combined capacity of 4.5 MWp in Portugal, reducing carbon emissions by more than 20% across two plants.

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Exide Technologies and energy provider EDP are going live with a state-of-the-art solar installation at Exide’s Portuguese battery production facility in Castanheira do Ribatejo. It is backed by an energy storage system using Exide’s high-performance Sonnenschein A600 gel battery technology, allowing for greater control and self-consumption of energy. Last year, Exide already introduced a solar installation at its Portuguese battery recycling facility in Azambuja, and now the company has combined capacity of 4.5 MWp across the two installations

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One of the largest of its kind in Europe

The production facility shows an exciting path forward for energy-intensive manufacturers looking to reduce energy costs and manage carbon emissions. Solar provides a cost-effective and renewable source of energy. Stored energy can be used at night and in reduced sunlight, further reducing emissions and dependence on the grid. It is one of the largest self-generation installations backed by a BESS (battery energy storage system) in Europe and highlights the potential for such projects to be deployed at scale.

The two new installations contain approximately 11,250 photovoltaic panels and 70 invertors, which would produce enough energy to supply more than 1,500 homes. The installations will reduce carbon emissions by 23% at the Castanheira factory and by 19% at the Azambuja recycling plant. EDP designed and delivered both projects, and worked closely with Exide on the energy storage component. The bank of Sonnenschein gel batteries provides 500kWh of storage.

High-performance energy storage

The Sonnenschein A600 gel battery has been proven over decades of use in complex, large- scale network power applications. It is manufactured in Exide’s European production facilities to the highest grade of reliability and is designed for deployment in tough operating conditions. The original gel technology is maintenance free and offers first-class safety features. The battery uses a tubular plate design and offers a long service life and protection against deep discharge. It is also completely recyclable, making the product a strong environmental choice.

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“Our Castanheira plant is one of the largest installations of its kind, and shows what can be achieved by combining solar with high-performance energy storage technology. I would like to thank the teams from Exide and EDP who worked on the project,” said Stefan Stübing, CEO and president of Exide Technologies. “More companies will rely on storage-backed self-generated power in the years ahead, and we are excited to be at the forefront of this trend. Our Sonnenschein A600 gel battery technology is extremely capable in this application.”

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