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Stadium powered by used car batteries

The Johan Cruijff ArenA is one of the world’s leading stadiums for sports matches and events and one of the most sustainable stadiums in the world. It’s also a living lab enabling rapid development, testing and demonstration of smart applications and solutions in and around the stadium. Recently the ArenA realized the largest European energy storage system using second-life and new electric vehicle batteries in a commercial building. The Johan Cruijff ArenA battery provides a more reliable and efficient energy supply and usage for the stadium, its visitors, neighbors and the Dutch energy grid.

The battery is the missing link between the energy production (7000m2 of solar panels on the roof and their own windmills), other sustainable sources (such as city heating and cooling) and consumption (big events, mainly at night) for the multi-purpose stadium. It plays an important part in the energy transition, from fossil to renewable energy, of the Johan Cruijff ArenA.

The stadium is very familiar with the fluctuating energy supply and demand. Their energy demand peaks considerably during a soccer match or an event but the 4.200 solar panels on the roof are not always generating energy at that exact moment.

The energy storage system is unique. By combining Eaton power conversion units, an energy management system from The Mobility House and the equivalent of 148 Nissan LEAF batteries, the three megawatt battery not only enables a more sustainable energy system, it also creates a circular economy for electric vehicle batteries. Thanks to this system, the stadium is able to use its own sustainable energy more intelligently and, as Amsterdam Energy ArenA BV, it can trade in the batteries’ available storage capacity. As a result, the stadium will contribute to a stable Dutch energy grid.

The energy storage system provides several benefits:

  • Back-up power for events aiming to replace the existing diesel generators.
  • Primary control reserve as grid service towards the grid operator.
  • Peak shaving occasional exceptional peaks during events to reduce the yearly grid connection fees.
The system, realized in Q2 2018, is the largest European energy storage system using second-life and new electric vehicle batteries in a commercial building. It has 3 Megawatts of power and 2,8 Megawatts of storage capacity.
Next step
AKEF, ArenA, BAM and The Mobility House established a company called Amsterdam Energy Arena BV that, besides being the owner and responsible for the operation of the energy storage system, will focus on new Energy Storage System Projects. Services provided are, amongst others, Business Planning, Solution Design, ESS Sourcing, Financing and Realization. Furthermore, in the future the ArenA wants to share its battery with neighboring venues and those living and working in Amsterdam Southeast.
Want to know more?
Check out the Amsterdam Innovation Arena for more projects by the Amsterdam ArenA.
Elaine Vermeent
projectmanager Johan Cruijff ArenA
"The Johan Cruijff ArenA is one of the most sustainable stadiums in the world and leads the way in introducing smart innovations like this unique energy storage system."
Henk Markerink
Director of innovation at the Johan Cruijff ArenA
Partners involved in this project:
A unique project and the result of collaboration between Nissan / Eaton / BAM / The Mobility House and the stadium
Supported by the Amsterdam Climate and Energy Fund (AKEF) and Interreg
Amsterdam ArenA / Flickr Creative Commons