The largest solar-powered battery in the world is now up and running, and it's located in Parrish. Florida Power & Light's Manatee Energy Storage Center, as it is known, was unveiled by the utility giant at a ceremony held Monday evening, with a light and drone show powered by energy from the battery.
The Storage Center takes up 40 acres, about the same as 30 football fields, and has a capacity of 409 megawatts, about equal to 300 million AA batteries, which allows it to power 329,000 homes for more than two hours. The facility stores power generated by a nearby Florida Power & Light solar array and then feeds that into the electrical grid when it's needed. The new technology allows solar power to be used at night or on rainy or cloudy days.
The project is part of Florida Power & Light's "30-by-30" goal, which is to install 30 million solar panels in Florida by 2030. The company has already installed more than 13 million panels. Overall, Florida Power & Light aims to generate 40 percent of its energy from renewable sources like solar by the end of the decade.