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Corporations, citizens and most bankable batteries: ‘Storage & Smart Power’ returns

Volume 19 of PV Tech Power has just hit the (digital) shelves and once again the quarterly technical journal from our publisher Solar Media includes ‘Storage & Smart Power’, the dedicated section created and curated by Energy-Storage.news.

The magazine is available for free download from the PV Tech site, while individual papers from Storage & Smart Power will also appear here on E-S.N in the coming weeks.

We’re looking at two of the biggest ‘stakeholder’ groups in the energy industry of tomorrow: corporations and ordinary people. From customers, to providers, with roles in between, some of the world’s biggest companies and ordinary citizens are shaping the future, in very different ways.

Heavy industry and big tech companies are big procurers of renewable energy, but when it comes to the need to adapt, corporations with a direct interest in fossil fuel industries are, for obvious reasons, going to have to seek new tactics to survive. Our feature, “Corporate takeover: the end of independence?” (p.100) looks at Shell’s acquisition of battery storage player Sonnen, as well as the new ownership of Greensmith and Younicos by Wartsila and Aggreko respectively. 

We ask what makes an energy storage company an attractive target, whether these mission-driven companies can retain their commitment to their original aims and if corporate involvement is vital to roll out clean energy technologies at scale. 

Complementary to that piece in some ways is the feature, “Power to the People” by Liam Stoker, Solar Media’s UK editor (p.106). It looks at how control of Britain’s domestic energy market, traditionally held by the ‘Big Six’ group of utilities, is now a hotly contested prize. From big players from other industries taking a sideways step, to start-ups that claim to have cracked the grid’s complex combination safe of stacked revenues, an energy market revolution is happening as the energy transition accelerates. 

We’re also privileged that this edition of Storage & Smart Power includes a contributed piece on DNV GL’s Battery Module Scorecard, through which the accreditation, certification and testing house explains the importance of comparing and accurately assessing the capabilities of different lithium modules used for energy storage (p.96). 

Elsewhere in the main magazine, the cover feature focuses on the roles of big data and predictive analytics in the PV industry, with specific regards to post-subsidy deployment. PV Tech Power takes a deep dive into the ways buzzwords like big data, artificial intelligence and augmented reality can provide practical benefits to the industry. Engineers and data scientists from i-EM explain how predictive analytics and a ‘democratic’ future for big data access and analytics can bring big benefits (p.17) – not in the misty, distant future but right now. 

Complementary to that, the journal runs some real-world case studies as Enel Green Power, Aquila Capital and Pöyry discuss the impact of their own digitalisation efforts so far (p.32). 

Within the 116-page free journal are also feature articles and technical papers on topics including bifacial solar’s transition from niche to mainstream, the impact of soil erosion control and drainage, building PV systems to weather storms, strategies to minimise risk of wind damage to solar arrays, some novel ways to boost PV module output, the evolution of solar asset management and an in-depth look at Spain’s 175MW Don Rodrigo solar plant. 

Download PV Tech Power Volume 19, including E-S.N’s ‘Storage & Smart Power’, here.

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