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Interviews

How energy storage helps energy assets connect with energy markets

14 Apr 2021, 05:38 • By Andy Colthorpe
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How energy storage helps energy assets connect with energy markets

Energy storage can help enable cleaner, reliable, low-carbon energy networks while connecting energy assets to the market opportunities that will make the transition to renewable energy economically feasible. We speak to Wärtsilä’s Jeff Damron about the ways that the value of energy storage can be realised in markets across the world, both today and in the future.

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Guest blog

Storage will be vital for hydrogen to help solve renewable energy’s big challenges

19 Apr 2021, 15:02 • By Georgina Ainscow
Storage will be vital for hydrogen to help solve renewable energy’s big challenges

Hydrogen increasingly looks likely to have a role to play in achieving decarbonisation targets worldwide, and investments and innovation are scaling up. But costs remain high and for clean hydrogen to be most effective at integrating high shares of renewable energy, storage is a vital piece of the puzzle, writes Georgina Ainscow, a Senior Patent Attorney at Reddie & Grose, a firm of European and United Kingdom patent, trade mark and design attorneys.

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Editor's blog

From customers’ homes to utility portfolios: Inside Swell Energy’s new virtual power plant reality

19 Apr 2021, 10:58 • By Andy Colthorpe
From customers’ homes to utility portfolios: Inside Swell Energy’s new virtual power plant reality

In the first part of this interview with Swell Energy CEO Suleman Khan we heard about how Swell Energy has been working to ‘productise’ the virtual power plant proposition: making it attractive to utilities and to their end-customers and then wrapping that into a long-term agreement. This time out, we speak to Suleman about some of the finer details of the VPP proposition and where he thinks the market is heading.

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Editor's blog

Time to take virtual power plants seriously: Swell Energy creates asset class from customer assets

13 Apr 2021, 06:24 • By Andy Colthorpe
Time to take virtual power plants seriously: Swell Energy creates asset class from customer assets

As society moves away from centralised fossil fuel generators to increasing shares of distributed renewable energy resources, the idea that customers’ homes could become host to virtual power plants (VPPs), joining the dots between electricity supply and demand across the grid, has gradually gathered traction. Andy Colthorpe speaks with Suleman Khan CEO of Swell Energy, which has raised nearly half a billion dollars in financing for solar-plus-storage VPPs in 14,000 homes across California, New York and Hawaii.

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Guest blog

America’s clean energy transformation is an investment, not a gamble

12 Apr 2021, 11:45 • By Phil Brennan
America’s clean energy transformation is an investment, not a gamble

For the US to thrive while achieving its decarbonisation goals, it needs a robust clean energy economy, creating well-paid jobs and a strong trajectory for technical innovation, argues Philip Brennan, CEO of Echogen, an Ohio-based provider of waste-heat recovery systems and electro-thermal energy storage solutions.

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Guest blog

Five things energy storage learned during the pandemic

6 Apr 2021, 09:35 • By Aaroh Kharaya
Five things energy storage learned during the pandemic

While 2020 may have been and gone, the strange times we're collectively experiencing certainly have not. Looking back at least gives us an opportunity to reflect on the lessons learned during the past year or so and Aaroh Kharaya, product manager at solar PV and battery storage quality assurance, supply chain management and engineering services firm takes us through his top takeaways from a time that we may otherwise seek to forget.

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Guest blog

Energy security in climate disasters: From Texas’ unheeded lessons to customer-sited reserves

29 Mar 2021, 13:26 • By Catherine Von Burg
Energy security in climate disasters: From Texas’ unheeded lessons to customer-sited reserves

How do electric grids that were state-of-the-art in the 19th Century remain stable and resilient through 21st Century climate disasters and other problems? They don't, says Catherine Von Burg, CEO and co-founder of distributed battery energy storage company SimpliPhi Power - but giving people the power to be independent can be a solution fit for the future.

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Guest blog

Texas Winter Storm highlights the importance of battery storage for telecom networks

17 Mar 2021, 13:20 • By Ricardo F. Rodriguez
Texas Winter Storm highlights the importance of battery storage for telecom networks

This year's Winter Storm Uri caused havoc in Texas, particularly in the energy sector, where extreme weather and a resultant set of generation problems and transmission grid issues led to loss of power and even loss of life across the US state. Ricardo F. Rodriguez, a senior consultant from analysis and research group Guidehouse looks at another aspect of the situation: the impact on the state's telecommunications infrastructure and how battery energy storage could provide a greater degree of certainty and resilience to this vital network.

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Guest blog

Texas’ energy crisis: Future directions for planning and building resilient grids

8 Mar 2021, 14:11 • By Scott Burger, Annie Baldwin, Jason Houck, Marco Ferrara
Texas’ energy crisis: Future directions for planning and building resilient grids

The repercussions of Texas' Winter Storm events in February, may be felt for years. Scott Burger, Annie Baldwin, Jason Houck and Marco Ferrara at long-duration energy storage start-up Form Energy discuss how in-depth system modelling of current and future grids offers some early takeaways which might help prevent the next crisis and how multi-day energy storage could play a leading role.

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Editor's blog

Texas blackouts and the role energy storage can play in a more resilient future

3 Mar 2021, 08:24 • By Andy Colthorpe
Texas blackouts and the role energy storage can play in a more resilient future

Texas’ grid and the idiosyncrasies of its electricity planning system regime made global headlines in February following a harsh winter storm and subsequent blackouts that affected millions of people and businesses for almost an entire week. It may be a unique market with unique characteristics, but what wider role can batteries — and other energy storage technologies — play in assisting the grid to remain stable and prevent a situation like this from happening again?

Feature
Analysis

Is the ‘SPAC track’ the fast lane to growth… or the road to ruin?

1 Mar 2021, 07:19 • By Charles Lesser
Is the ‘SPAC track’ the fast lane to growth… or the road to ruin?

The sudden and rapid use of Special Purpose Acquisition Companies (SPACs) to launch privately-held companies into publicly-listed entities is a minor phenomenon of our time and some players in clean energy industries including energy storage, have been quick to join the wave. It can work out really well, but it can also all end in tears: so choose wisely, says Charles Lesser, partner at Apricum - The Cleantech Advisory.