New Investments Renew Hope For Compressed Air Energy Storage

LightSail Energy, a grid-scale energy storage startup, just added $5.5 million to its coffers. New investor Total, the French Energy giant, joined Peter Thiel, Bill Gates, Khosla Ventures, and Innovacorp in the second closing of its $37.3 million Round D.

It’s still early days for energy storage and for LightSail, of which CEO Steve Crane says, “We’ve mostly had our heads down trying to productize our technology.”

LightSail’s funding announcement arrives after last week’s energy storage ruling from the California Public Utility Commission (CPUC). The CPUC is asking Southern California Edison to procure 50 megawatts of energy storage over the next eight years, according to a final decision issued Wednesday. It’s among the first state regulatory rulings that put grid storage at center stage.

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