NY-BEST Newsletter March 31, 2016

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March 31, 2016

April 1st marks the start of a new fiscal year in New York State and, as negotiations continue in the State Capitol on a new budget, NY-BEST is closely monitoring and supporting efforts to create a new State rebate for Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEVs), funding for grant programs for ZEV infrastructure and other energy-related initiatives. We will keep you apprised as negotiations are finalized.

On the policy front, NY-BEST is working with our Policy Working Group to develop comments for the New York State Department of Public Service (DPS) on a proceeding involving the value of Distributed Energy Resources (DER). This proceeding is part of the State's Reforming the Energy Vision initiative and is a cornerstone issue to realizing the goals of REV as well as to capturing the benefits of energy storage. The DPS is seeking comments and proposals on 1) the interim successor to net energy metering and 2) establishing a methodology for determining the full value of DERs for the larger purpose of developing DER compensation mechanisms. Comments are due to DPS by April 18, 2016. Members interested in participating in the Policy Working Group are encouraged to contact us at info@ny-best.org

Members should have recently received an invoice for your 2016 NY-BEST membership dues. Revenue from dues play an important role in NY-BEST's finances and make it possible for us to continue to produce high quality events, to represent the interests of the energy storage community in New York State and to deliver the array of services for members of the organization. If you haven't already done so, please take a moment to submit your dues payment-and many thanks to all who have recently done so.

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

Premco Inc. (New Rochelle, NY) and its predecessor companies have been in business since 1917. Premco employs 20 skilled professionals including machinists, mechanics and engineers to create, manufacture, assemble and install high performance equipment throughout the New York metropolitan area. Seeking to push the technological envelope, its engineering team is currently manufacturing a flywheel for customer-side-of-the-meter applications, with a focus on vertical transportation systems. The flywheel is aimed at energy storage for renewable on-site electricity production and grid power.

NEST iON (Dublin, Ireland) creates tactical energy solutions for law enforcement agencies and armed forces. NEST iON solutions are used to supply energy to intelligence equipment, telecommunications equipment, drones, tactical robots and various sensor devices.

Best Regards,

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William Acker
Executive Director

Dr. William Acker

Latest News

The Latest News From The Battery And Energy Storage Industry

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NY-BEST Member News

Sandia Labs News Releases. Smaller. Cheaper. Better.
A Sandia-led team has developed a way to make a magnetic material that could lead to lighter and smaller, cheaper and better-performing high-frequency transformers, needed for more flexible energy storage systems and widespread adoption of renewable energy. The work is part of a larger, integrated portfolio of projects funded by Department of Energy’s (DOE) Energy Storage Program in the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability. Transportable energy storage and power conversion systems, which can fit inside a single semi-trailer, could make it cost effective to rapidly install solar, wind and geothermal energy systems in even the most remote locations.

Fluidic Energy Provides Intelligent Energy Storage Systems for "100 Communities" Renewable Energy Project in Africa
Fluidic Energy™ announced today the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in partnership with the Government of the Republic of Madagascar, represented by the Minister of Energy, H.E. Gatien Horace, and Henri Frasier Fils & Cie, the Caterpillar partner in Madagascar. This collaboration will provide a renewable energy-based turn-key mini-grid solution to 100 remote villages and communities with more than 400,000 people who currently do not have access to reliable electricity. The village mini-grid systems deployed will utilize more than 7.5MWp of photovoltaic panels, 45MWh of Fluidic Energy Advanced Energy Storage products, connections and pre-pay billing systems.

How California Schools Save Millions Using Energy Storage
On March 1st San Diego’s third largest school district joined a growing number of school districts in California turning to energy storage to save on energy bills. Grossmont Union High School District in San Diego’s east county region announced plans to install 7.4 megawatt hours of energy storage across 14 sites and nine district locations in a partnership with California-based Green Charge Networks. The installation is expected to save the district more than $6.4 million over the life of the project. The energy storage system and installation will come at no cost to the district thanks to a performance-based shared savings model offered by Green Charge.

General Electric seeks to capture CO2 for energy storage
General Electric is working on an energy storage technology that can use captured carbon dioxide. GE’s technology combines several steps to store power as heat and cold and then release the stored energy through a “sunrotor” that GE has developed. Carbon dioxide is often maligned as a harmful industrial byproduct, but if technology being developed by GE Research pans out, captured CO2 emissions could be put to use to store energy for later use. GE’s research draws on an existing technology, concentrating solar power (CSP), which uses an array of mirrors to focus sunlight on a fluid in a tower. The heat from that fluid can be used to make steam to drive a conventional turbine. That heat can also be used to melt salt, which turns molten at over 1,000° Fahrenheit, and holds the thermal energy long enough to be used to create steam to run a turbine into the evening hours.

Saft, the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of high-tech industrial batteries, has been awarded a contract with Windmar to provide three Intensium® Max 20P high-power lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery containers to provide ramp-rate control and frequency response for a 10MW photovoltaic (PV) facility in Puerto Rico. With renewable energy sources in high demand, Saft’s battery containers provide more than 10 years of reliability to help stabilize Puerto Rico’s island network as increasing levels of renewables are deployed. In 2013, just one percent of the island’s electricity came from renewables. The island’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requires the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) to obtain 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2035.

NY-BEST work captures energy to move forward
The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium wrapped up its sixth annual “Capture the Energy” conference last week at the Marriott in Colonie. The March 9-10 meeting brought together regulators and government representatives, utilities, grid system operators, investors, academia, technologists, start-ups and established companies. In sum, this year’s “Capture the Energy” was a major hoedown of diverse experts that demonstrated New York is making tangible progress in addressing the policy, economic and technology hurdles facing broad development of grid-scale energy storage.

RES Completes Construction of the McHenry Storage Project
Renewable Energy Systems (RES), a global leader in the development, engineering, and construction of wind, solar, transmission, and energy storage projects has completed construction on the McHenry Storage Project, in McHenry, Illinois. The project, owned by EDF Renewable Energy, reached commercial operation on December 20, 2015. McHenry is the sixth energy storage project completed by RES. The company has now constructed more than 85MW of flexible resources with a total +/- range of more than 170MW, and 33MWh of energy storage either in operation or under construction across North America, ranking near the top of the industry. RES served as the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for McHenry, a project that includes eleven containers of lithium ion batteries manufactured by BYD.

Puerto Rico contracts for energy storage to meet 20% renewables mandate
Puerto Rico's electric utility tapped Saft to supply lithium-ion battery storage at a 10 MW solar facility on the island, part of a plan to boost renewable usage by 2035, Energy Storage News reports. Puerto Rico has lately taken the spotlight for the $8.2 billion in debt restructuring for PREPA, but now the territory's utility is refocusing efforts to meet its goal of obtaining 20% of its electricity with renewable resources by 2035 to meet a mandated Renewable Portfolio Standard. Saft was awarded the contract alongside Windmar, and will provide three "Intensium Max 20P high-power lithium-ion battery containers," which will provide ramp-rate control and frequency response for the solar facility.

UniEnergy selects Northern Power Systems' converters for energy storage project
UniEnergy Technologies (UET) and Avista have selected Northern Power Systems to deliver advanced power conversion for the largest capacity flow battery installed in North America. Situated near Pullman, Washington near Washington State University and Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, the battery started operations last April. UniEnergy Technologies manufactured the battery, which is integrated with Northern Power Systems' power converters. The UET system is an advanced vanadium flow battery, which uses Pacific Northwest National Laboratories technology that was developed with funding from the Department of Energy's Office of Electricity.

Why battery storage is key to a clean energy grid
For a product that we carry in our pockets every day, there has been a surprisingly skeptical attitude taken towards energy storage technologies used on the electric grid. However, that attitude is changing as policy makers as well as consumers begin to realize the potential of energy storage to control energy costs and improve grid efficiency. There are many battery chemistries, with each manufacturer touting its own recipe that offers just the right performance characteristics for specific applications and products to support renewable integration and other grid services. Some recipes are better at providing short bursts of high power output, much like a sprinter running a hundred yard dash — quick bursts with high acceleration.

News From Beyond New York

Efficiency, Solar and Storage Offer a Unique Opportunity to Bring Clean Energy to Affordable Housing
After over 40 years of promoting energy efficiency and a decade of promoting solar PV, clean energy advocates working in the affordable housing sector are considering what the next steps should be for cutting energy costs for low-income tenants. The next steps will require more integrated strategies that enable property owners to better manage energy demands, improve the financial outcomes of energy investments, and create more resilient and sustainable affordable housing. We believe that energy storage must be a significant component of this future.

Berkeley Lab Makes Graphene Energy Storage For Fuel Cell Evs
Fuel cell electric vehicles have a long way to go before they can compete with their battery EV cousins, and energy storage is a key sticking point when the fuel is hydrogen. Hydrogen is light, plentiful, and fabulously energy dense, but energy storage in a personal mobility unit racing down a crowded highway is a different kind of chicken. Safety, cost, and performance are critical sticking points, and a research team at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory is on to a solution for at least one of those. The US Energy Department’s 2015 annual report provides a birds-eye view of the array of energy storage solutions that are emerging for hydrogen fuel cells, including advancements in hydrogen tank technology as well as solids-based storage.

Fossil Fuel Plant Converted to Green Energy Storage
Renewable energy with grid-level storage is gradually replacing fossil fuel generating plants around the world, so what's the big deal about an 8 MW (4 MWh) battery bank in Lewes, Delaware? Maybe the fact that it's literally going to be housed in a facility that used to be an oil-burning power plant. The city of Lewes Delaware once had its own oil-fired power plant. Due to concerns about pollution, the plant was closed in 1999. Since then, the small community at the edge of the grid started purchasing power from the PJM regional grid.

China’s Electric Cars Sales Boom To Continue, Sales To Double In 2016, China Minister States
Electric vehicle sales and production will double in China in 2016, according to recent reports. This refers of course to both all-electric vehicles (EVs) and also to plug-in hybrids (PHEVs). This matches a similar claim made by BYD founder and chairman Wang Chuanfu in an interview with Sustainnovate right after BYD won the 2016 Zayed Future Energy Prize in theLarge Corporation category. Given that over 300,000 electric vehicles were said to be sold in China in 2015, that means that sales are expected to top 600,000 in 2016. Well, that’s the prediction of the head of the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology anyways — predictions and opinions may vary.

The Flaw Of “Zero Energy Buildings” Without Energy Storage
Conceptually, a Zero Energy Building (ZEB) design is simple to understand and dozens of projects have undertaken the challenge of becoming zero energy. Some of them have even “succeeded.” The reason for the partial success is that there hasn’t been a clear, concise broadly accepted term or definition of what ZEB means. As a result, to some extent, designers, contractors and property owners have not grasped the entire scope of what it means to be zero energy or its larger implications beyond the building. To help bring clarity across the industry, the Department of Energy released its definition for ZEBs. The new definition states that a ZEB is “an energy efficient building, where, on a source energy basis, the actual annual delivered energy is less than or equal to the on-site renewable exported energy.”

Utility Execs Weigh In On Energy Storage And Solar
Almost half (45%) of utility industry executives surveyed by Accenture worldwide, and 64% in Europe, reported that the traditional electricity distribution model is no longer fit-for-purpose. Unless the industry undergoes a digital, regulatory and business model transformation, utilities warn of increasing pressure on supply reliability and prices, according to Accenture’s Digitally Enabled Grid research, now in its third edition. The proliferation of distributed generation has been a key challenge for utilities. Accenture’s survey of 85 industry executives across 18 countries finds that more than half (56%) expect grid faults to increase by 2020 as a result of distributed renewable generation, such as residential solar photovoltaics. In addition, improving economics could make electricity storage another key disruptor, with 32% of executives expecting it to cause an increase in grid faults, up from 14% in 2013.

EV Chargers Plus Energy Storage Equals Multiple Benefits
EV chargers plus energy storage are expected to lower demand charges and avoid utility-funded infrastructure upgrades in a pilot program in Hawaii. In the pilot, a partnership among Hawaiian Electric (HECO), the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and Greenlots, a 50-kW fast charger for EVs is coupled with energy storage at a HECO site that has only 23 kW of capacity, said Brett Hauser, CEO of Greenlots, which develops solutions for charging EVs. Not only can stored energy supply the charging station; it can also be fed back to the grid, he said. The Greenlots system tracks pricing so the EV driver knows when it’s best to charge and also allows drivers to pay using mobile applications.

America’s First Commercial-Scale Rail Energy Storage Project Receives BLM Approval
Advanced Rail Energy Storage, LLC ("ARES") announced that its proposed commercial-scale gravity-based rail energy storage project ("ARES Nevada") has been granted a right-of-way lease by the Bureau of Land Management ("BLM"). Once operational, the 50-megawatt project will encompass 106 acres of public land in Southern Nevada.

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