Research shows Italy leading in grid storage

New research shows grid energy storage in Italy is the biggest market in Europe. Sodium battery technology dominates, thanks to the Terna SANC project which uses NAS battery systems from NGK Insulators.

New research shows grid energy storage in Italy is the biggest market in Europe. Sodium battery technology dominates, thanks to the Terna SANC project which uses NAS battery systems from NGK Insulators. Photo credit: Terna SpA

Germany might get most of the attention but when it comes to European grid-scale battery storage the real action is in Italy, a new report says. Based on an analysis of US Department of Energy data for Energy Storage Update Europe 2015, Top markets for energy storage in Europe shows Italy dominating in grid-scale storage by a large margin.

Thanks mainly to a gigantic battery installation by Terna, the transmission system operator (TSO), Italy has almost double the amount of battery capacity in train as the next 11 largest European energy storage markets put together.

Terna’s SANC complex in Campania, totalling more than 278MWh of storage, not only surpasses the battery storage capacity of any other European market but also skews the electrochemical technology mix for the whole continent.

It means Europe’s dominant electrochemical technology for grid-scale applications is set to be sodium-based batteries, rather than lithium-ion, for some time.

Highlights of research

Other highlights of the research, released in the run-up to Energy Storage Update Europe 2015 in London, from November 30 to December 1, include:

  • Evidence of a strong market for residential battery-and-PV systems in Italy, despite a drop-off in rooftop solar incentives and uncertainty over the impact of new distributed storage legislation.
  • A 63MWh grid-scale battery storage market in the UK, dominated by lithium-ion products in a mix of utility and island microgrid projects.
  • A more modest utility-scale energy storage sector in Germany, where nonetheless appetite for residential battery systems is soaring.

“Europe’s major energy storage markets represent a heterogeneous group with few characteristics in common,” says the report.

“Players will have to carefully choose the market environments that give them best advantage, and expect to adapt when moving to new territories. The opportunities are there: it is just a case of picking the right one.”

Making the right choice

Helping developers make the right choice is one of the objectives of Energy Storage Update Europe 2015.

The only event in Europe focused exclusively on the commercialisation of storage, the conference aims to offer insights into utility procurement, policy support, investment sources, technology costs and project economics.

Among the speakers are Tabish Khan, regulatory manager for British Gas; Jean-Marie Bemtgen, European Commission senior policy expert; and Riccardo Amoroso, Enel Green Power’s chief innovation and sustainability officer.

“With this conference we are looking to emulate the success of our US events,” said Jack Ahearne, Energy Storage Update’s head of strategy and development.

“Just as in California, there are a number of markets in Europe where energy storage is gathering significant momentum. The challenge for vendors and developers is how to make sure they do not miss this opportunity.”

  • Register for Energy Storage Update Europe 2015 before October 9 and you can save €300 on business and basic passes or €100 on a government and utility pass.

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