A team at Harvard is pursuing a metal-free battery chemistry based on organic molecules called Quinones. The technology potentially offers an abundant and safe material to use for scaling up flow batteries, but according to the energy storage team at Lux Research in Boston, there are significant limitations based on project cost.
One of the largest investor-owned utilities in the USA is looking to use a series of measures that are likely to include customer-side energy storage in order to stave off the need for US$1 billion worth of infrastructure investment.
India looks to be the latest country to examine installing energy storage at the top level, with the Power Grid Corporation of India (PGCIL) actively seeking demonstration projects and the country’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) inviting comments from stakeholders ahead of similar plans.
French battery manufacturer, Saft, has been awarded a contract to supply a lithium-ion battery system for use in a 12MW solar plant being built in Hawaii.
The emerging availability of storage and smart-grid technologies allows communities to meet their energy demands locally. As Andrew Jones of S&C Electric writes, community-owned micro-grids will become an increasingly important element of the future energy system.
The first grid-connected energy storage facility in Canada, in the country’s leading solar province, Ontario, is now operational.
Earlier this year New York governor Andrew Cuomo unveiled plans for an “energy modernisation initiative that will fundamentally transform the way electricity is distributed and used in New York State”. This will include the creation of a leading energy storage marketplace, argues Bill Radvak, chief executive officer of American Vanadium, whose company recently installed a vanadium flow battery storage system for New York’s Metropolitan Transport Authority in Manhattan.
The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) has inaugurated a test centre at its northern campus that will pair a 1MW solar array to 100kWh of lithium-ion battery-based energy storage.
SolarCity, one of the largest solar installers and leasing companies in the US, has moved into providing energy storage via pilot programmes for residential and commercial customers in key regional markets including California. Will Craven, director of public affairs and spokesman for SolarCity, discusses the regulatory situation facing the company and others in the rapidly growing area of energy storage-plus-solar.
After a strong showing in the energy storage segment at its European counterpart in June, Intersolar North America is following suit with a number of companies and organisations launching new products at the show.