Brussels, Belgium --- (METERING.COM) --- June 24, 2013 - The European Association for Storage of Energy (EASE) and European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) have recently set out joint recommendations for a European energy storage technology development roadmap towards 2030.

The recommendations are aimed to describe future European needs for energy storage in the period to 2030, and cover those energy storage technologies that are believed to hold the largest potential for economic and technical development over the coming 20-year period. These include chemical energy storage; electrochemical energy storage, including batteries and electrochemical capacitors (supercapacitors); mechanical energy storage, including compressed air energy storage, flywheel energy storage and hydro energy storage; thermal energy storage; and multi-functionality hybrid energy storage systems such as liquid hydrogen in combination with superconducting magnetic energy storage (SMES), which is a potentially future applicable storage technology.

According to the report Europe’s short term electricity balancing market is believed to be where energy storage will be first applied in the region based on commercial business cases and the need for additional balancing power will be substantiated already within the next 5 years. However today only a few energy storage applications can justify market-based business cases and this is the reason why many energy storage technologies have not already spread into the market.

In the longer term – up to 20 years – energy storage will become an even more significant part of the electricity system. In this time perspective not only ancillary services but also energy arbitrage based on stored energy will be finding bridgeheads on the shore of the energy market. This will be one consequence of the increasing penetration of renewable supply sources alongside the corresponding withdrawal of fossil, dispatchable generation capacity.

20 years from now energy storage applications are likely to link the electricity system closely to its neighbor sectors in the energy system. Private as well as industrial heat demand are obvious candidates for future supply from the electricity system, and the transport sector will undoubtedly be shifted – although perhaps at a slower rate – to supply by energy based on sustainable electricity.

Based on this, and to secure market-ready solutions when required, it is recommended in a time frame of 2 years to start small to medium scale European demonstration and pilot programs focusing on grid integration of energy storage technologies which possess the relevant maturity. It is also recommended to initiate a durable coordinated research effort, including modeling and materials and equipment research, among leading private companies and research laboratories across Europe.

In a time frame of 2-5 years, among the recommendations market terms should be designed for integrating energy storage in the electricity market, and market incentives should be arranged and organized for integration of energy storage technologies in the electricity grid. The basic materials research initiated in the first 2 year period should be continued, and new large-scale demonstration projects should be supported based on the experience gained from first phase projects.