San Diego zoo debuts energy storage

It converts sunlight into energy, charges electric vehicles and delivers access power to the grid. And it keeps your car cool while you go feed the elephants. The newly unveiled parking lot at San Diego zoo has solar canopies that can produce up to 90kW of electricity, five car-charging stations and the possibility to deliver energy to the grid. Best of all, it has two lithium-polymer storage units, with a total capacity of 100kW.

According to an article on the KPBS site, the energy storage element is a first for this type of project. And the installation has so impressed the University of California in San Diego that it is considering building a similar power hub on campus.

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H2 company does deal with AEG

UK-based hydrogen technology and energy storage company ITM Power has announced it has signed an agreement with AEG Power Solutions to integrate its electrolyser technology with AEG’s power control electronics. Under the agreement, ITM Power and AEG will initially address five projects, ranging from imminent deployment to early proposal development.

This agreement with ITM represents the first time AEG’s power conversion technology will be coupled with polymer exchange membrane electrolysis, enabling rapid-response electrolysis at a scale appropriate for electricity grid balancing services, says ITM.

Mitsubishi to demonstrate energy storage

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and SSE (formerly Scottish and Southern Energy) are planning a 2MW lithium-ion energy storage system project in the Orkney Islands. The project aims at demonstrating power supply stabilisation in the region, which currently enjoys a large but variable quantity of wind-produced renewable energy.

It will be conducted with the support of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation of Japan and should go live in early 2013.

More good funding news for compressed air

General Compression has secured a USD$60 million investment which will partly go towards funding the company’s first grid-scale energy storage demonstration project, reports Recharge News. The 2MW compressed air energy storage (CAES) project, which is already underway in Texas, is aimed at storing surplus energy generated from wind power and is being backed by ConcoPhillips Company.

General Compression has also secured investment from Northwater Intellectual Property Funds, US Renewables Group, Duke Energy, Serious Change and the Wellford Energy Group.

Call for energy storage system campaign

“In order to make energy storage systems marketable as quickly as possible, we are calling for a 100,000 storage system campaign in Germany similar to the very successful 100,000 roof programme for photovoltaic systems,” says Karl-Heinz Remmers, the CEO of Solarpraxis AG and publisher of PV Magazine.
 
He added that: “These incentives can be created without any special energy storage legislation. Together with the incentives we would like to see a parallel scientific research programme established to sustainably promote the new energy economy.”
 
Remmers is adding to the growing chorus of renewable energy figures demanding that governments take energy storage more seriously as an investment issue and adds to the debate on how far public funds, including EU money, should be involved in the sector.

Wind farm gives up on storage after fire

Hawaiian Electric Co. has said it will replace its 15MW battery system, which was used to help stabilise the wind energy output for its grid, with a Dynamic Volt-Amp Reactive voltage regulation device, made by American Superconductor, at its Oahu North Shore site.

In August, a fire destroyed the Kahuku Wind Farm’s original energy storage system warehouse and caused damage that will cost US$8 million to rectify, reports Pacific Business News. Moreover, the work will not be completed for some time, meaning that the wind farm will be offline until late 2013.

Electric vehicles for military energy storage

Southwest Research Institute is a member of a team recently awarded a $7 million contract from the US Army Corps of Engineers to demonstrate the use of electric vehicles plus generators and solar arrays to supply emergency power. The program, called the Smart Power Infrastructure Demonstration for Energy Reliability and Security, is intended to make military installations more energy efficient and secure.