“Where are we on the energy storage adoption curve?” That’s one of the questions a participant asked at our latest monthly Ask SepiSolar Anything “Car Talk for Solar” webinar series. It’s the only place on the web where solar professionals can ask SepiSolar’s solar+storage engineer experts anything about a particular renewable energy topic.
For July, our topic was to Ask SepiSolar Anything… about battery storage technologies. That is, about the technical aspects of different battery chemistries on the market today.
To offer a broad view than the typical Lithium-ion energy storage landscape, SepiSolar’s CEO Josh Weiner invited Matt Harper, the Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of Avalon Battery, a Vanadium flow battery company based in Fremont, California.
Together, Josh and Matt tag-teamed on the answers, offering various perspectives and case study examples of their years of experience in developing and modeling energy storage for various applications.
From the live audience at Intersolar and on the web, we received the following questions. Jump to the topic that most interests you in the time stamp at the end of the question:
- Overview of Energy Storage Technology Landscape 00:01
- Matt Harper briefly describes Avalon Battery and its Vanadium flow battery technology 01:40
- Question 1: Please give a concrete example of a project that has integrated electric vehicles with solar and storage in some kind of a project or a use case 07:00
- Question 2: There are a lot of flow battery technologies out there. Zinc Iron, Zinc Bromide, Iron-Iron, etc. Why Vanadium? What makes it so special? 12:48
- Question 3: If you have a grid-tied inverter already installed, how would you integrate a battery into that, perhaps aftermarket? 17:55
- Question 4: What are the HVAC requirements for Avalon and other flow batteries? 21:27
- Question 5: Does the efficiency level of Vanadium Batteries change at cold temperatures? 27:30
- Question 6: I have an existing PV array that uses SMA inverters, two strings with a total of 6kW. Can it work with a flow battery? 29:20
- Question 7: Where are we on the energy storage adoption curve? i.e., Utility vs DG projections? 45:51
- Question 8: When will batteries—of all kinds—be cheap enough and available enough to combine with solar, wind, etc and replace a baseload natural gas plant. That is when will utilities have a choice between a baseload natural gas plant and a solar+storage plant? 47:04
Have a question about selling solar+storage for commercial projects? Then tune in next month for Ask SepiSolar Anything about Selling C&I Energy Storage. Click the button below to sign up!