Lockheed Martin’s flow battery technology to get first large-scale pilot at a solar project site in Canada’s Alberta

Alberta — Lockheed Martin announced it is directing $9 million U.S. dollars toward TC Energy’s Saddlebrook Solar + Storage Project.

The investment, in conjunction with Emissions Reduction Alberta partial funding, enables TC Energy, a Canada-based energy infrastructure company, to construct a hybrid power plant consisting of a utility-scale solar facility and a long-duration flow battery energy storage system in Alberta.

This pilot project is expected to be the largest flow battery energy storage facility in Alberta and will aid the region’s sustainability and decarbonization efforts.

Lockheed Martin’s investment, under Canada’s Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITB) Policy, is one of many made across Canada associated with Canada’s purchase and in-service support of 17 CC-130J Super Hercules aircraft, delivered to the Royal Canadian Air Force from 2010 through 2012. The investment exemplifies how defence procurement projects serve as a catalyst for innovation, critical research and development.

“In addition to supporting Canada’s national security interests, our teams are focused on partnerships and collaboration that secure a brighter future through investments that will play a central role in Canada’s economic stability and provide for growth in the decades ahead,” said Lorraine Ben, chief executive, Lockheed Martin Canada. “We’re proud to bring this sustainable energy project to life with TC Energy.”

The Saddlebrook Solar + Storage Project consists of a solar generating facility that uses bifacial solar panels to generate power. The installation is expected to provide up to 102.5 megawatts (MW) of solar power, which can create enough electricity to fuel approximately 30,000 homes.

Lockheed Martin has also entered a teaming agreement with TC Energy to provide the project with its long-duration GridStar® Flow energy storage system. This system is expected to have an output capacity of up to 6.5 MW and output duration of up to eight hours. The project will use GridStar Flow to store power generated from the solar farm and dispatch it to Alberta’s electricity system in times of peak demand. Together, the solar installation and GridStar Flow are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants by providing reliable, emissions-free energy to the grid.

“Energy storage is the key to unlocking the full potential of renewable energy and aiding in decarbonizing Alberta’s electricity grid,” said Corey Hessen, TC Energy senior vice-president and president, Power, Storage & Commercial Marketing. “This investment represents a significant contribution and we’re looking forward to advancing this innovative pilot project.”

Additionally, the University of Calgary, Lockheed Martin and TC Energy are working together to perform research on the Saddlebrook Solar + Storage Project to demonstrate the effectiveness of a large-scale solar plus storage generation facility and inform similar sustainable energy projects across Canada.

“In collaboration with Lockheed Martin and TC Energy, our researchers will conduct ground-breaking energy research in pursuit of shared sustainability goals,” said Dr. William Ghali, vice president, research at the University of Calgary. “This partnership ensures UCalgary will continue to be a leader in transforming the energy landscape for a cleaner, more efficient future.”

This innovative project has also been awarded $10 million in Cash Available for Distribution funding through the Emissions Reduction Alberta Biotechnology, Electricity, & Sustainable Transportation Challenge.


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