NY-BEST Newsletter 11-6-2012

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Bringing you the latest updates from the
Battery and Energy Storage Industry

November 6, 2012

We recently received word that the International Electrotechnical Commission, or IEC, is planning to form a new technical committee (TC) focused on electric energy storage systems (EES). The objective of the proposed TC is to develop a consensus-based international standard that will cover planning, integration, control and management of EES systems including mechanical, electrochemical, chemical, SMES and thermal storage domains. If you or any of your colleagues are interested in participating in this activity, please contact me for further information.

I'd like to remind you of two upcoming events--on Thursday 11/8, NY-BEST will host a 90 minute webinar entitled Energy Storage on the Edge of the Grid that will explore market potential, models for capturing value and existing challenges to wide-spread deployment of energy storage systems on the grid in buildings, microgrids and other utility distribution system deployments. 

The following week on Wednesday 11/14, NY-BEST will host a one-day technology conference in Rochester. The conference, From Research to New Products: Accelerating the Path to Commercialization, will highlight the connections between research and new product development and the pathways to bring energy storage products to market.  The agenda will include speakers from both the private sector and academia who will provide insightful updates on the future direction of energy storage and will highlight the tremendous work going on here in New York. The conference will include presentations from leading research organizations, an update on the NY-BEST Product Commercialization Center and a student poster session.  I hope you will be able to join us at either one or both of these events.

I'd like to welcome the newest member of NY-BEST:

Subway Labs (New York, NY)  is developing big data tools to accelerate the development of new energy materials and devices. Their cloud-based software tools help bring new batteries, solar cells, fuel cells, and capacitors to market faster.

Be sure to exercise your right to vote today!

William Acker
Executive Director

Funding Opportunities:

NY-BEST members received information in this newsletter about upcoming funding opportunities. Becoming a member is easy and economical. Visit http://www.ny-best.org/MembershipForm for more information.

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NY-BEST Member News:

Hydrogenics Awarded Contract to Deliver a 100kW HyPM-OH
Hydrogenics Corporation (Nasdaq:HYGS) (TSX:HYG), a leading developer and manufacturer of hydrogen generation and power system products, announced today that they have been awarded a contract by the High Technology Development Corporation (HTDC), Hawaii Center for Advanced Transportation Technology (HCATT), along with the U.S. Air Force Advanced Power Technology Office (APTO) to develop, fabricate and deliver a 100kW HyPM-OH outdoor containerized hydrogen power system. This system will provide robust and reliable power generation that will enable new stationary power flexibility and achieve energy security capabilities for an Air Force Base in Hawaii.

Plug Power Receives $2.5m DOE Award for Fuel Cell Ground Support Equipment
Fuel cell forklift specialist Plug Power is to receive a $2.5 million award from the US Department of Energy (DOE) to retrofit 15 electric tow tractors with hydrogen-powered fuel cells for use at two of FedEx’s domestic airports in Tennessee and California. Both airports receive high volumes of traffic and both will utilise natural gas as a feedstock for hydrogen production.

New colloidal films boost lithium-ion battery performance
SCIENTISTS from Cornell University have developed a way to fabricate carbon-free and polymer-free lightweight colloidal films for lithium-ion battery electrodes.

Army awards Arista Power ~$1M for phase 2 microgrid
Arista Power, a manufacturer, designer, and integrator of renewable energy generation, management, and distribution systems, announced today that it has been awarded a $909,000 U.S. Army contract to complete Phase Two development of the new Intelligent Scalable Micro-Grid.

GE Energy Storage hiring up to 75 by end of year
GE Energy Storage is hiring as many as 75 workers by the end of the year. That would bring the head count to 225, half the number of employees the plant will employ at full production.

GE announces Microgrid Control System
GE announces the release of its Multilin™ Microgrid Control System designed to help permanently islanded or grid-connected microgrid operators integrate renewable energy resources and fossil fuel-based resources to optimize microgrid operation and minimize energy costs.

NYISO, DOE, PSC Highlight New York Smart Grid Initiative
Executives from the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) and New York state's electric utilities were joined by officials from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) yesterday to highlight the benefits of a statewide $75 million smart grid initiative, which the DOE supported with a Smart Grid Investment Grant of more than $37 million.

Saft wins 1 million euro battery contract from Bombardier ...
Saft's compact MRX systems deliver 30 percent extra energy storage capacity

GE's battery plant in Schenectady is powering up
Prescott Logan is out to prove that General Electric can still build a company from scratch.

Gov. Cuomo Unveils Blueprint For 'Energy Highway' In New York
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, D-N.Y., has received the Energy Highway Task Force's Blueprint, a comprehensive plan that aims to add up to 3,200 MW of additional electric generation, transmission capacity, and clean power generation through up to $5.7 billion in private investments. Energy storage is called out as an important tool in modernizing the State's electric grid.

LIPA Purchasing Power From Solar Carport Projects
Holtsville, N.Y.-based Eldor Contracting Corp. says it has completed the fifth solar carport in its 12.82 MW solar initiative in Suffolk County, N.Y. To date, Eldor has completed four solar carports at the Brentwood train station, H. Lee Dennison Building in Hauppauge, Suffolk County's North County Complex in Hauppauge, and a Suffolk County-owned building in Riverhead.

Energy Storage Alive and Well: A123 Not Dead
To borrow a phrase from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail", we are not dead yet. The media has picked up on the A123 Systems Chapter 11 filing and has extrapolated it to mean that somehow energy storage is another failed Department of Energy (DOE) technology. In fact, the industry feels fine.

NYSERDA Awards $2M for energy storage technology companies
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has awarded $250,000 to each of eight companies and research centers to develop working prototypes for a wide range of energy-storage technologies.

NY-BEST energy storage economic impact study and roadmap
The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) – a statewide consortium of battery and energy storage companies, universities, industry and government partners - released an Economic Impact Study and Roadmap for Energy Storage in New York State.

Sendyne Corp. was awarded a new patent for its active balancing technology. Patent number 8,269,455 was issued by the US Patent Office for a Charge Balancing System with high efficiency and the ability to provide continuous and bi-directional charge transfers among cells in a large battery array.

ARPA-E funds DNV KEMA battery limits testing
In cooperation with partners NexTech Materials and Beckett Energy Systems, the ARPA-E funded, DNV led project will use battery life prediction modeling and sensor monitoring to identify the limits of battery operation. By implementing the modeling and sensor approach, and an innovative new sensing technique, the project aims to extract greater performance from batteries.

For more news about NY-BEST and NY-BEST members click here.

News from Beyond New York:

Researchers boost silicon-based batteries
The team led by Rice engineer Sibani Lisa Biswal and research scientist Madhuri Thakur reported in Nature's open access journal Scientific Reports on the creation of a silicon-based anode, the negative electrode of a battery, that easily achieves 600 charge-discharge cycles at 1,000 milliamp hours per gram (mAh/g). This is a significant improvement over the 350 mAh/g capacity of current graphite anodes.

Nanoparticles improve lithium battery electrodes
Nanoparticle battery electrodes deposited through electrophoretic deposition could lead to lighter and more efficient batteries. At top is a schematic of the EPD process. The middle is an electron microscope image of the nanoparticle electrode.

CalBattery Breakthrough a Product of the National Innovation Ecosystem
California Lithium Battery Inc. (CalBattery) – a start-up established in 2011 – has announced the development of a potential battery breakthrough that could significantly increase energy density and reduce costs.

Aquion hiring 28 people
Aquion Energy is hiring 28 people. The company is scaling up R&D and a manufacturing center which is expected to be in production mid-late 2013. Openings are in engineering, business management, electricians, logistics and manufacturing.

General Compression Secures $60M in Series B Round
General Compression, Inc., a provider of air energy storage systems, secured an additional $5.5M in its Series B round of financing, bringing the total gross proceeds to $60M.

Materials scientists make additive-free battery electrodes with nanoparticles
Materials scientists have developed a simple, robust way to fabricate carbon-free and polymer-free, lightweight colloidal films for lithium-ion battery electrodes, which could greatly improve battery performance.

Energy Storage Market Poised For Growth Over The Next Decade
Advances in next-generation pumped storage, compressed-air energy storage and advanced batteries have multiplied the technology options available for energy storage on the grid (ESG), while, at the same time, the applications for ESG are also increasing. Rapidly changing energy mixes and increasingly volatile load profiles will challenge grid operators to deliver reliable and secure electricity, encouraging demand for ESG over the next decade.

Electric car range could triple with silicon-graphene breakthrough in lithium batteries
Lithium-ion battery research company, CalBattery, has announced a huge breakthrough in energy density that could in a few years give a 300% jump in battery energy density, that could triple electric car driving range.

Europe’s Largest Battery Factory Being Built in Germany
Europe’s largest battery cell factory is under construction in the German state of Saxony, Germany Trade & Invest today announced.

First Theoretical Model of Charging Cycle Performance Could Revolutionise Battery Research
Being able to simulate the change in battery performance after thousands of charging cycles could significantly accelerate battery research, say engineers

National Lab Tests EV-To-Grid Capabilities
Ideal Power Converters (IPC), a developer of power converter solutions, has announced that the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has successfully demonstrated vehicle to grid (V2G) capabilities using IPC's bi-directional Battery Converter.

After Bankruptcy of A123 Systems, Fisker Keeps Calm and Carries On
At the Luxury Review, an annual showcase in Chelsea for makers of big-ticket apparel, jewelry, liquor, single-origin chocolate bars and motorized conveyances, bankruptcy may be considered gauche cocktail conversation. But parked at the center of the Metropolitan Pavilion space on West 18th Street on Wednesday evening was the Fisker Karma, the $100,000 plug-in hybrid sedan, packing lithium-ion batteries supplied by the newly bankrupt A123 Systems.

An Update on Advanced Battery Manufacturing
The advanced battery market is expanding dramatically in the United States and around the world -- from $5 billion in 2010 to nearly $50 billion in 2020, an average annual growth rate of roughly 25 percent. Earlier this year, the Toyota Prius became the third best-selling vehicle in the world. Virtually every major manufacturer – Ford, Nissan, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Toyota, BMW, and others – are preparing new models of hybrid and electric vehicles with improved performance, longer range, and lower costs. More than 40 models of hybrid and electric vehicles are already available, and that number will nearly double by next year. This is good news for consumers, because today’s electric vehicles are fueled for the equivalent of about $1 a gallon -- and the next generation will bring even bigger savings.

Ballard 1MW ClearGen™ Fuel Cell System Begins Operation at Toyota Headquarters Campus
Ballard Power Systems BLDP -1.30% CA:BLD -1.39% today announced the commissioning of a 1.1-megawatt ClearGen™ fuel cell system installed at the Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc. (TMS) sales and marketing headquarters campus in Torrance, California. Powered by Ballard's proprietary proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells, the ClearGen™ system enables Toyota to satisfy peak and mid-peak power needs using electricity from either the clean energy fuel cell system or from the power grid.

U.S. storage funding by technology and department
The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) has just published the findings of report that found 39 separate battery and energy storage initiatives with a variety of key characteristics had been implemented across six US agencies.

MIT begins in-depth exploration of Lithium-air battery technology
A lack of understanding of how lithium reacts with oxygen has hindered the development of practical lithium-air batteries, but this type of battery offers the prospect of storing up to four times as much energy as today's lithium-ion batteries for a given weight, and so could be a key enabling technology for energy storage, among other uses.

NGK and Hitachi providing storage for Los Alamos smart grid demo
Companies participating in the demonstrations at the Los Alamos site are ... NGK Insulators, Ltd. (NAS battery system) ... Hitachi, Ltd. (lead-acid battery system, large-scale PCS for PV).

Shifting Gears: A Growing Debate on How to Electrify U.S. Transportation
Last week, ITIF released Shifting Gears: Transcending Conventional Economic Doctrines to Develop Better Electric Vehicle Batteries, which explores the challenges confronting today’s electric vehicle (EV) industry and presents an “innovation economics” strategy for overcoming them.

SAE approves new EV fast-charging standard
SAE said the new charging standard, developed with the cooperation of more than 190 global experts representing the automotive, utilities and charging equipment business, ensures charging times can be reduced from as long as eight hours to as short as 20 minutes.

German Energy Plan Plagued by Lack of Progress
A kaiser still ruled Germany when the Franken 1 power plant generated electricity for the first time, almost 100 years ago. The plant was in fact slated for closure, but because of the energy turnaround, Franken 1 has been allowed to remain in operation.

For more news articles from beyond New York State click here.

This news update is provided as a service to members and interested parties of the New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium. NY-BEST is an industry-led coalition working to build a vibrant, world-class, advanced battery and energy storage sector in New York State.

Your suggestions and comments for future topics are welcome.

Please email suggestions to: info@ny-best.org