Battery storage market is at home in Australia

Energy storage Australia: we explain the reasons for the massive growth in residential solar battery storage and look at the main companies in the market. Photo credit: Ergon Energy

Energy storage Australia: we explain the reasons for the huge growth in residential solar battery storage and look at the main companies in the market. Photo credit: Ergon Energy

By Dr Geoff James

Affordable battery energy storage is on Australia’s doorstep and getting an open-armed welcome.

And it is the residential sector that is driving demand, likely to overtake utility-scale installations next year to become the dominant grid-connected storage resource.

Only the immature supply chain can slow the growth of residential storage and with it the new energy democracy.

Several factors combine to make a perfect storm that will blow away old business models and energy industries unwilling to adapt.

Firstly, Australia has lots of rooftop solar PV generation, about 3GW and over 20% of households, which is significant on a world scale.
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One battery to rule them all?

After the Tesla Powerwall launch, there is reason to think lithium-ion batteries could become the overwhelming technology of choice for battery storage. Photo: Tesla Gigafactory

After the Tesla Powerwall launch, there is reason to think lithium-ion batteries could become the overwhelming technology of choice for battery storage. Photo: possible Tesla Gigafactory design.

By Jason Deign

The Tesla Powerwall launch three weeks ago focused attention on energy storage but may also have been a nail in the coffin for non-lithium-ion (Li-ion) technologies.

In drastically reducing prices, Tesla removed one of the remaining barriers to adoption of Li-ion as the standard for battery storage.

Currently other technologies are vying for supremacy on the basis of cost, safety, performance and bankability.

However, the launch of a residential battery system for USD$3,500 helped lay to rest the idea that Li-ion is automatically more expensive than other chemistries.

Even Tesla’s grid-scale Li-ion offering, the Powerpack, looks competitive with the most cost-effective battery technologies out there.
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