Recent NY-BEST News and Notes

News stories and other notes about NY-BEST, New York State and the Battery and Energy Storage Industry beyond New York. Only the last few weeks of news are shown here, to see older news click here.

 NY-BEST Member

National Grid and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to Collaborate on Transmission Grid Modernization and Energy Storage Research
1 week 1 day ago
National Grid, a leading US transmission company, and the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have entered into an agreement to work together on research in the areas of transmission grid modernization and energy storage technologies.
What Changed In The Solar Energy & Storage Markets In October?
1 week 1 day ago
What happened in the solar & storage industries in October? A lot! Below is a concise summary of the most notable solar and energy storage stories of the month.
World's Tallest Wind Turbine Includes Innovative Energy Storage System
1 week 2 days ago
With Tesla adding its Powerwalls and Powerpacks to houses, businesses, and the grid itself, one might think that Li-ion batteries are the ultimate in energy storage systems. That theory doesn't hold water - but what does hold water is the world's tallest wind turbine: a 3.4 megawatt GE 3.4-137, sitting atop a Max Bögl tower whose base includes a reservoir for a pumped hydro energy storage system, which the company calls a "water battery."
UPS And NYSERDA To Convert UPS Diesel Delivery Trucks In NYC To Electric
1 week 5 days ago
UPS and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) today announced that new technology will be developed to convert UPS package delivery vehicles from diesel to electric. UPS and Unique Electric Solutions LLC (UES LLC) will design, build, test and make the conversions. The project supports Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s aggressive goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 by replacing diesel vehicles with clean technology.
Tesla 48MWh battery eliminates need to build undersea cable in Massachusetts for up to 22 years
1 week 6 days ago
A planned energy storage system backed with a diesel generator could remove the need to build an expensive undersea cable to serve the island of Nantucket, off the coast of Massachusetts in the US. Nantucket, a popular holiday destination with a permanent population of around 10,000 people, is experiencing rising levels of energy demand. According to National Grid, this is leading in particular to peaks in demand between 5pm and 10pm in the summer months of July to August.
Great Lakes Graphite and Ashland Advanced Materials Draft Definitive Agreement to Manufacture Up to 10,000 Tons Per Year of Battery-Grade Graphite Products
2 weeks 5 days ago
Great Lakes Graphite and Ashland Advanced Materials have drafted a definitive agreement under which Ashland will provide GLK with up to 10,000 tons per year of graphite purification capacity in the initial start-up phase. A requirement to scale up further, to 50,000 tons per year of graphite purification capacity, is anticipated for the subsequent phase. Great Lakes Graphite has conveyed the updated anticipated requirements to their Brazilian supply partner to insure there will be adequate capacity along the supply chain to achieve targeted manufacturing levels.
Lithium Ion Battery Units Approved for Technology Campus
2 weeks 5 days ago
Four large energy-storage units resembling shipping containers will be installed next year in the Luther Forest Technology Campus, as part of a statewide effort to supplement the existing electric grid with alternative sources of power. A Texas company, Key Capture Energy, announced in late October that it has received the necessary site-plan approvals from planning officials in the Town of Stillwater for its battery-storage units.
Can LO3 Energy Cut Through the Hype on Blockchain?
2 weeks 6 days ago
LO3, a startup that brands itself as a "transactive energy company," is preparing to expand internationally after building the world's first blockchain microgrid. The company pulled in new investments last week from Braemar Energy Ventures and Centrica Innovations. The capital raise completed a Series A round for the Siemens-backed firm based in Brooklyn, New York.
Portland General Electric eyes spending up to $100M on energy storage
3 weeks 4 days ago
With costs plunging, Portland General Electric Company (NYSE: POR) is prepared to pursue a lot more energy storage than the puny amount required under an Oregon mandate. In its quarterly earnings call on Friday, the utility told analysts it will soon propose spending between $50 million and $100 million on 39 megawatts of energy storage. Oregon legislation passed in 2015 requires PGE and Pacific Power, the state’s big investor-owned utilities, to acquire at least 5 megawatt-hours each of energy storage, with a limit of 1 percent of their 2014 peak loads.
Uptown Funk: Where will NYC get its peak demand capacity?
3 weeks 5 days ago
Does New York City have sufficient resources to meet peak energy demand and, if not, how should any shortcoming be addressed? Those are two key questions facing energy planners for the Big Apple, with competing views on both.
Uptown Funk: Where will NYC get its peak demand capacity?
3 weeks 5 days ago
While about 30% of New York City’s peak demand is met by natural gas turbines older than most such plants in service, Consolidated Edison (ConEd), the city's distribution utility, sees no urgent need for new generation. A study by the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) concluded power plants now in service “will meet reliability criteria over the 2017-2026 period.”
Eos Energy, PSE&G Commissions Battery Storage System in New Jersey Solar Microgrid
3 weeks 6 days ago
Eos Energy Storage announced the installation and commissioning of a 250 KW battery system at the wastewater treatment plant in Caldwell, New Jersey. The batteries are a central component of Public Service Electric and Gas Company’s on-site solar-plus-storage microgrid that will help keep the facility operating during extended power outages.
Tesla posts first photos of solar+battery project in Puerto Rico hospital
4 weeks 17 hours ago
Tesla has revealed first photos of its solar and battery solution in Puerto Rico that’s being used to restore power to a children’s hospital in San Juan.
DNV GL launches first testing-based verification tool for battery lifetime
4 weeks 17 hours ago
Independent accreditation and testing company DNV GL has created Battery XT, the first testing-based verification of battery lifetime for lithium-ion (Li-on) batteries.
Jacobi Medical Center first in NYC to install energy storage system
1 month 2 days ago
Jacobi Medical Center is ensuring it's ready in case of another natural disaster by installing a new energy storage system.
BYD to supply batteries to Green Charge projects
1 month 2 days ago
China-based EV and storage specialist BYD is to supply batteries to projects built by Silicon Valley commercial energy storage provider Green Charge, which is a subsidiary Engie North America.
AES puts online 20 MW of storage systems in Dominican Republic
1 month 3 days ago
AES Dominicana, a unit of AES Corporation (NYSE:AES), announced on Tuesday that it had put into operation 20 MW of new energy storage battery systems in the Dominican Republic.
Enel is looking for energy storage acquisitions, CEO tells Bloomberg
1 month 3 days ago
Italian energy giant Enel is seeking new acquisitions in energy storage, Francesco Starace, the company’s CEO, told Bloomberg.Energy storage technology is quickly becoming “commercially viable,” Starace said.
Kodak: three takers at Eastman Park
1 month 4 days ago
Eastman Kodak has already signed up three customers for its Kodak Cell Assembly Center at Eastman Business Park in New York, company sources confirmed.

 Beyond New York

Colorado electric co-op rolls out 'community battery' program
1 week 16 hours ago
SoCore Energy, a Chicago based subsidiary of California utility holding company Edison International, sees electric cooperatives as growing market for energy storage. Co-ops typically have large territories and relatively few customers, so traditional transmission and distribution projects can be very costly with only a small number of customers to absorb those costs.
FERC storage/DER integration proposal gets high marks, but other priorities loom
1 week 16 hours ago
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) for energy storage and distributed energy resources (DER) (RM16-23-000) last November that has attracted more than 100 comments, including recent letters by members of Congress urging FERC to move the NOPR to completion “as quickly as possible.”
NRG Energy, Toshiba deploy 2 MW battery storage system in ERCOT
1 week 1 day ago
One of the more notable projects was Duke Energy’s 2012 Notrees storage project that was designed to store electricity from an adjacent wind plant. Two years ago, Duke said it would expand the facility to 36 MW. In February, E.On said it is installing nearly 20 MW of energy storage at two of its wind farms in west Texas. The lithium-ion battery arrays are due online by year end 2017.
Cheap Battery Forecasts Kill India's 25-Year Coal Power Deals
1 week 1 day ago
India’s power distributors are balking at traditional 25-year thermal-power purchase contracts, avoiding lengthy entanglements so they can benefit as costs for batteries and renewable energy slide. Now in vogue: agreements that last 10 years or even less.
Announcing the Latest Edition of the Levelized Cost of Storage Report 
1 week 1 day ago
Earlier this month, Enovation released the latest edition of the Levelized Cost of Storage report (LCOS 3.0) in collaboration with the global investment bank Lazard. Full list of findings available online.
There's Now An Electric Highway In California
1 week 6 days ago
The idea of an electrified road is not new, but barely anyone has ever driven on one. That's because the technology is new enough that it only exists in limited research situations. After all, not many people know how electric vehicles work, much less that it's possible to recharge them while they move in the right situations.
Google and VW will use quantum computers to develop battery, self-driving technology
2 weeks 16 hours ago
Volkswagen will embark on a transformation of its business through electric cars and self-driving technology, and it is looking elsewhere to bolster its technological capabilities. On Monday, the German automaker announced a partnership with Google to work with quantum computers for future battery, transportation, and self-driving technology. 
Energy storage gets a bigger seat at the utility planning table
2 weeks 16 hours ago
Utilities across the country from Duke Energy Carolinas to Southern California Edison have implemented energy storage projects for a variety of reasons, but until now few have included energy storage in their IRPs. Now, utilities in states ranging from Indiana and North Carolina to Arizona, New Mexico and Oregon have included energy storage in their long term planning processes.
Energy storage could hit 35 GW by 2025, new white paper says
2 weeks 16 hours ago
GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association already noted the first quarter of this year was the largest ever for energy storage. There were 71 MW of storage projects deployed in the first quarter, a 276% increase over Q1 2016 and the second highest quarter since GTM and the ESA began tracking energy storage in 2013, surpassed only by installations in fourth quarter 2016. Despite that strong performance, storage is still a small part of the total U.S. market, with all storage installations composing only about 0.5 GW.
Utilities See ‘Robust’ Spending on Grid Upgrades to Prepare for Distributed Resources
2 weeks 1 day ago
Utilities cut way back on infrastructure investments in the 1990s, delaying tens of billions of dollars in upgrades. Those investments started to pick up again after the 2009 stimulus package and Superstorm Sandy in 2012. The more recent surge in utility-scale renewables, plus a range of distributed resources like batteries, rooftop solar, EVs and microgrids, has also spurred new grid modernization activity.
Lazard: Project economics for energy storage still hugely variable
2 weeks 1 day ago
Lazard, which has advised the likes of Enel Green Power, Peabody Energy, Blackrock and Royal Dutch Shell, has just published its third annual Levelised Cost of Storage Analysis (LCOS), which looks at recent and expected technology and project cost declines, the economics for energy storage in various applications and a look at regulatory and policy issues.
Electric Vehicles
2 weeks 1 day ago
Around the globe, automakers and governments are betting big on electric cars. Plans to limit climate change count on getting more carbon-burning vehicles off the road. The transformation projected is enormous: by 2040, Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates there will be 530 million electric vehicles in use. There’s only one problem: So far, electric cars have been anything but popular. In 2017, they made up about 1 percent of global sales. The good news? They’re getting cheaper fast and able to go further between charges. Still, it’s not clear how soon the trip from the gasoline present to an electric future will be driven by consumer desire rather than government muscle. It’s a trip that could be complicated in the U.S. by a Republican tax plan.
Policies for energy storage continue to move forward during Q3
2 weeks 6 days ago
While the overall volume of energy storage deployments in the United States remains relatively modest, the technology is gaining more and more traction with utilities and policymakers, as evidenced in North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center’s (NCCETC) latest 50 States of Grid Modernization report. NCCETC found that among the 33 states that took legislative or regulatory action on grid modernization in Q3, 26 took some sort of action on energy storage. This includes not only the usual suspects of California, and the Northeastern states, but also an increasingly broad group of states in the South, the Mountain West and the Midwest.
New Studies on Disordered Cathodes May Provide Much-Needed Jolt to Lithium Batteries
3 weeks 4 days ago
Today’s lithium-ion battery was invented so long ago, there are not many more efficiencies to wring out of it. Now researchers at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) report major progress in cathodes made with so-called “disordered” materials, a promising new type of lithium battery.
It’s Big and Long-Lived, and It Won’t Catch Fire: The Vanadium Redox-?Flow Battery
3 weeks 5 days ago
The factory sprawls over an area larger than 20 soccer fields. Inside, it’s brightly lit and filled with humming machinery, a mammoth futuristic manufactory. Robot arms grab components from bins and place each part with precision, while conveyor belts move the assembled pieces smoothly down production lines. Finished products enter testing stations for quality checks before being packed for shipping.
Get Ready for Energy Storage Combinations We’ve Never Seen Before
3 weeks 6 days ago
Battery storage is breaking into an ever longer list of grid-scale configurations, as new business cases arise. Every major solar developer has begun at least contemplating storage paired with solar, even if few large projects have been built yet. GE has already paired batteries with its gas generators for fast ramping grid services; it expects the setup to prolong the life of the gas asset.
Caribbean Development Bank commits US$350k for energy storage, grid modernisation with Canadian help
4 weeks 17 hours ago
The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has approved funds of USD$350,000 for energy storage and grid modernisation in the Caribbean.
Sonnen seeks to work with US utilities, not replace them
4 weeks 1 day ago
In its home territory of Germany, energy storage provider Sonnen is making a play to replace utilities, but its business models in the US will instead emphasise cooperation with existing energy suppliers. Earlier this month, Sonnen, formerly known as SonnenBatterie, said that it will install rooftop PV and Sonnen’s battery energy storage systems at a new development of 3,000 homes, in partnership with US home builder and town planner Mandalay Homes. The development, in Prescott Valley, Arizona, is intended to allow residents to self-consume onsite solar-generated power, which Sonnen says will give the community “very low” power bills “from the outset”.
Hawaii’s PUC expands rooftop solar and energy storage offerings
4 weeks 1 day ago
The Hawai‘i Public Utilities Commission has approved two new programmes expanding its customers’ abilities to install rooftop PV and energy storage systems, while also clarifying the terms of its existing programmes.
Where Will We Charge All Those Electric Cars We’ll Soon Be Buying?
1 month 1 day ago
The auto industry is getting ready to plug into battery power in a big way. In recent months, virtually every major automaker has announced some form of “electrification” and, by the middle of the coming decade, conventional hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and pure battery-electric vehicles could account for nearly one-third of all new vehicle sales — even more if California regulators ban the internal combustion engine entirely, as they’re now considering.