Speakers’ Corner: CENER, Raquel Garde Aranguren

This week, we continue our series where we ask our speakers 6 questions on Energy Storage, share their answers with you. Today we are pleased to feature the answers from the Head of Energy Storage,Renewable Energies Grid Integration Dept,Raquel Garde Aranguren. Enjoy!

One technical innovation in the field of energy which has excited me the most would probably be the new flow batteries as they have the capability to separate power and energy capacities. This provides them a flexibility that other storage systems have not, except for hydrogen. Also, the improvements on hydrogen technologies as electrolysers able to operate according to the power availability control or new applications are interesting as well. 

The main handicap to develop energy storage is the lack of regulation and a market framework well defined. Once both defined and implemented, technologies shall have the opportunity to demonstrate their cost-effectiveness and they will be deployed. Homogeneous standards to commercialize these systems with clear specifications are also necessary.

At large scale the only commercial system is pumped-hydro and it provides just balancing services. That is not enough to make it cost-effective and its deployment is decreasing. Other services should be included among its capabilities to increase revenues.

At distribution level, many services are expected to be provided by energy storage but that is not yet fully demonstrated. The lack of regulation hinders the deployment of distributed storage and services are difficult to be identified.

I think that an accurate economical assessment should be developed taking into account other options to ensure the flexibility of the European grid into the Internal Energy Market. But, if RES are developed as expected, grid reinforcements won’t be enough to manage the energy and development of new concepts as Smartgrids requires storage to balance energy into the smartgrid. Therefore, energy storage will be essential in the future at different levels of the grid but probably more at the distribution level.

I would like Forum delegates to brainstorm and discuss about regulation and market development. I hope they will be able to come up with the procedure that regulators should follow to include storage in the European and national directives and the main points to clarify regarding that.

My organization has been working on Energy storage for more than 10 years. We started working on hydrogen but in the last 5-6 years we have extended our expertise to all the rest of the technologies, mainly batteries and related technologies (electric vehicles). We use energy storage as the core of Smartgrids and we have in our facilities many different technologies to test. We have as well a large experience in regulatory and economical aspects related to storage.

Raquel Garde Aranguren will be speaking at the Pre- Forum Workshop about “Energy Storage with Solar”, on Monday, 22 April 2013. 


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