Around the world there has been tremendous interest in deploying energy storage technologies over past 4-5 years. In November 2009, US Department of Energy Secretary, Dr. Stephen Chu announced that the DOE is awarding $620 million for projects around the country to demonstrate advanced Smart Grid technologies and integrated systems that will help build a smarter, more efficient, more resilient electrical grid. As part of this funding, 16 awards for a total of $185 million were selected to help fund utility-scale energy storage projects that will enhance the reliability and efficiency of the grid, while reducing the need for new electricity plants. Improved energy storage technologies will allow for expanded integration of renewable energy resources like wind and photovoltaic systems and will improve frequency regulation and peak energy management. The selected projects include advanced battery systems (including flow batteries), flywheels, and compressed air energy systems.
DOE Storage Demonstration Projects