From the 22nd to the 26th of April 2013, delegates from all over the world gathered in Berlin for the 6th Energy Storage World Forum to listen to more than 60 speakers. The speakers alone represented some 20 utilities and 5 regulators. The delegates came from universities, utilities, power electronics companies, government ministries, consultancies and a whole host of companies and organizations.
On Forum Day 1, two Keynote speakers addressed two very different issues; Hans-Joachim Otto, who represented the German Federal Ministry, touched on regulation in Germany, while Francesco del Pizzo, CEO of TERNA PLUS, shared about his company’s expansion in Italy.
Given that energy storage projects have been around for a while, many of the speakers on Day 1 presented on the preliminary data that their companies had collected from their energy storage projects, evaluating the benefits and challenges facing each situation. Speakers from Fiamm, Samsung, and ENEL showed that there was a positive business case for energy storage in places like Maldives, the Daegu City Residential Project in Korea, and 4 battery installations in Italy.
On the other hand, data from EKZ showed that energy storage projects need not be so aggressive in terms of scale, so long as we manage our energy consumption wisely and carefully using a Model Predictive Control. The speaker from Vattenfall also argued that the energy storage industry still needs to improve on cost, technology, and reliability.
Forum Day 2 began with the Breakfast With The Investors session, where delegates had breakfast while listening to three speakers share the investors’ perspectives while considering financially committing to the energy storage sector.
At the Tech Soap Box session, a unique feature of the Energy Storage World Forum, Nina Munzke of the Karlsruher Institute of Technology was named the winner, and also secured herself a full speaking slot at the 7th Energy Storage World Forum in London 2014. Munzke shared with the audience a self-programmed simulation tool that can calculate and thereby optimize energy storage solutions to suit local conditions in areas including autonomy, load consumption, solar radiation, and battery strategies. The system can also be scaled to suit different operating strategies. Such a system, when tailored specifically to suit various scenarios, can be more economic than fossil fuels.
Speakers on Day 2 of the Forum focused mostly on the business case for energy storage. With speakers from Bloomberg, RWE and Deutsche Bank touching topics about procuring capital, making uneconomical applications economical, and the question of stakeholders, sentiments from the Breakfast With The Investor session were echoed throughout the day on the economic viability of energy storage. Other speakers also shared about their energy storage applications in Swaziland, Spain, and around the world.
On Forum Day 3, speakers went beyond the usual scope of batteries, solar and wind to include less common storage technologies. Hybrid Diesel mini-grids, electrolyzer facilities and wind-gas solutions were among some of them mentioned. Transmission of electricity was also a topic of the day, with the speakers from ENBW and Elektro-Slovenija echoing the need for more energy storage on the grid instead of more transmission lines, in addition to the huge benefits energy storage facilities could offer TSOs.
All in all, speakers throughout the week acknowledged the infancy of energy storage, and the huge amount of work to be done in future in order to realize a clean, renewable energy world. Energy storage is not as simple as conventional coal and gas-powered plants, given that generating and storing energy from the immediate environment is not so predictable. Storage requires much more personalized, customized efforts that cater to local conditions. Thus, delegates at the Post-Forum Workshops were tasked to Build An Action Plan, another unique feature of the Energy Storage World Forum. Blueprints of solid action were designed around the themes of the week, and delegates were able to return to their companies with concrete measures for future energy storage projects.
The work on energy storage does not stop at the end of the Forum. Every day, there is research to be done, topics to be discussed, and information to be shared. If you would like to be part of the ongoing discussions on energy storage, you can join our Energy Storage Forum LinkedIn group with more than 3000+ energy storage professionals from around the world.
The Dufresne Team looks forward to meeting you in London, 4-6 March 2014 for our 7th Energy Storage World Forum. For more details, subscribe to our newsletter using the pop-up at the top.
If you want to know more about this and other topics directly from end users of energy storage technologies join us at one of these annual events: The Energy Storage World Forum (Grid Scale Applications), or The Residential Energy Storage Forum, or one of our Training Courses.