Flow battery systems are to be the first energy storage technology evaluated at a new research centre in the US state of Alabama.
The Energy Storage Research Center (ESRC), opened on 16 July by the independent Southern Research organisation, will initially test systems developed by California-based Avalon Battery.
ESRC will focus on energy storage applications in combination with renewables through joint research, demonstration and test projects.
The centre aims to pave the way for the technical and economic growth of next-generation energy storage technologies— evaluating a range of technologies, systems and levels of integration using software infrastructure with a platform for large-scale data collection and analysis.
Dr Bert Taube, energy storage and renewables programme manager at Southern Research, said: “The ESRC represents a critical step of de-risking energy storage system deployments between the factory and the field.”
The centre is a collaboration between the organisation, Southern Company and its Alabama Power subsidiary, the Electric Power Research Institute; the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Alabama.
The US Energy Storage Association says market research shows the global energy storage market is growing to an annual installation size of 40GW by 2022, up from an initial base of only 340MW in 2012.