[Inter Solar America 2012] At a glance: Energy Storage – Concepts, Applications, Economics, Performance5:24 pm am July 10, 2012
More than 100 guests were in attendance for the afternoon panel discussion regarding Energy Storage at Intersolar North America on July 9, 2012. The discussion provided a full scope of the concepts, applications, economics and performance variables that make energy storage a key technology for optimizing the integration of solar energy into the grid.
(Photo: Exhibitors Present their technologies and build new connections with potential customers)
While energy storage is still in its early stages, the market is growing. Collectively, the industry is pursuing several methods of reducing costs and bringing storage technology to scale. Among the ways to drive down the cost of energy storage and to increase investment into storage applications, presenters discussed standardizing storage cell design, government legislation that would offer storage incentives and localizing energy storage technology suppliers. Additionally, the flexibility that energy storage offers to the grid for multiple applications will further drive adoption as well as driving down cost of grid energy.
Energy storage offers numerous benefits, and key among them are its ability to meet the inherent issues of time shift when discussing renewable energy such as solar and wind, and meet optimal output during periods of greatest need. Through energy storage, suppliers will be able to reconcile the moment-to-moment changes between supply and demand and manage transition congestion by charging storage batteries at night and using them during the day.
“There is a lot of interest in storage,” said Jim Eyer, advisor of the California Energy Storage Alliance. “It’s a ‘rising brand’ among key stakeholders.”