1 July 2020
28 May 2020
With increasing global demand for renewably generated power and other clean technologies, the widespread adoption of energy storage continues to be described as the key game changer for electricity systems.
Reliable storage systems are a critical missing link between intermittent renewable power and a reliable net-zero carbon future. Beyond solving this main challenge, energy storage is being increasingly considered to meet other needs such as relieving grid congestion or smoothing out the variations in power that occur independent of renewable-energy generation. It makes sense with increasing power demands, increasing investments into solar and wind that we want to facilitate storing that energy using innovative battery technologies.
Battery storage is a future-proof industry if we use similar trends and increasing demand we’ve seen in the solar industry; the storage sector is learning and growing in the right direction. Non-subsidies business models are becoming more profitable with a decreased ROI time. Battery technologies are innovating so quickly and Nilar is really at the forefront of the industry’s innovation.
Energy storage really does sit in the middle of this circle.
Energy storage can save operational costs in powering the grid, as well as save money for electricity consumers who install energy storage in their homes and businesses. Energy storage can reduce the cost to provide services such as frequency regulation as well as offset the costs to consumers by storing low-cost energy and using it later, during peak periods at higher electricity rates.
By using energy storage during brief outages, businesses can avoid costly disruptions and continue normal operations. Residents can save themselves from lost food and medicines, and the inconvenience of not having electricity. Also, there will be options for both businesses and residential consumers to participate in demand response programs when available.
Improve Reliability & Resilience
Energy storage can provide backup power during disruptions. The same concept that applies to backup power for an individual device (e.g. a smoke alarm that plugs into a home but also has battery backup) can be scaled up to an entire building or even a micro-grid at large.
Storage provides flexibility for the grid, to ensure uninterrupted power to consumers, whenever and wherever they need it. This flexibility is critical to both reliability and resilience. As the cost of outages continues to rise, the value of enhanced reliability and improvements in resilience also increases.
Integrate Diverse Resources
Energy storage can smooth out the delivery of variable or intermittent resources such as wind and solar, by storing excess energy when the wind is blowing and the sun is shining and delivering it when there is a lack of renewable power input. But storage can also support the efficient delivery of electricity for inflexible, baseload resources. When demand changes quickly and flexibility is required, energy storage can inject or extract electricity as needed to exactly match the load – wherever, and whenever it’s needed. Energy storage is the enabling technology.
Reduce Environmental Impacts
In simplest terms, energy storage enables electricity to be saved for later, when and where it is most needed. This creates efficiencies and capabilities for the electric grid—including the ability to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
By introducing more flexibility into the grid, energy storage can help integrate more solar, wind and distributed energy resources. It can also improve the efficiency of the grid – increasing the capacity factor of existing resources – and offset the need for building new pollution-emitting peak power plants.
As our energy supply mix gets cleaner with low- and no-carbon resources, energy storage helps that supply mix to evolve more easily and reliably.
27 May 2020
What led you to work in the energy storage industry?
My great interest for supporting environmentally friendly technical solutions.
What’s most fun about your job?
Being able to participate in development projects that have an environmental focus in one way or another. Also, to be able to engage with other people who are driven by their environmental commitment and to be a part of a solution to an issue that I’m passionate about solving.
What is the most common misconception about your role?
When talking to acquaintances, the most common misconception is the assumption of my job within sales being similar, in many ways, to jobs within telemarketing. When talking to people within my industry, I often get mistaken for being a deeply technically knowledgeable engineer.
Early mistakes that you learnt from in your career?
Within technical sales, not to move too quickly; let the technique take its time. Early in my career I was more eager to sell, I realized early that it’s better to make a good sell than a quick sell.
Who inspires you?
In general, good speakers and rhetorics. Simon Sinek is someone for example. He is knowledgeable, well-briefed and has a clear image of what he wants to convey. Bill Gates is another example; he is engaged, dedicated and knowledgeable.
A good book you’ve read?
Emotional intelligence by Daniel Goleman. It’s a good book to read to better understand the expression EQ. Another type of very interesting intelligence. The book made me aware of different aspects to how we function and how to train characteristics other than the intellect.
What is the coolest thing you’re working on right now?
Electrification of stoves and kitchens in African villages. This project is a very clear example of why I chose this occupation.
A secret talent?
I happen to be a hobby-rockstar. I’m the lead vocalist in a band called Captain Black Beard; you can find us on Spotify. I have been singing for about 20 years.
Best tip to stay productive?
Training in the mornings. I try to run three times per week. One thing I’ve learned from quarantine is spending some time working alone can increase work efficiency.
What’s the best thing about working at Nilar?
It’s a company under build-up which gives the employees increased opportunities to affect their own work situation. We have a lot of possibilities to engage in activities with our colleagues and it’s a very flexible working environment.
25 May 2020
Thinking of a Post-COVID-19 Future While in the Present
With the world in its current state, we at Nilar wanted to provide our perspective.
During this spring, it is hard to let a day go by without thinking about the pandemic in some way. It has affected business to business interactions as well as relations between countries. According to the International Labour Organization, it has affected the livelihood of more than 80% of the global workforce with 1.3 million people knowingly infected worldwide. With all that is going on, it is difficult to think beyond the current problems. Though the current reality is grim, there are multiple groups from different countries working directly on the virus. Therefore, the best course of action for a company like ours is to be forward thinking.
Overall the energy industry as a whole has taken a hit. Oil has been the most heavily impacted. Demand is so low due to the vast reduction in fuel consumption that the industry is losing money in barrel production. Though the end-use consumers are seeing a substantial reduction in prices at the pump, the entire supply chain of oil refining, transport and storage may grind to a halt. This shift in oil markets actually directly affects natural gas since there are long-term gas supply contracts with links between the two commodities. The pricing implications causes issues for gas suppliers as well. Cost reductions in these markets lead to immediate decisions on where to invest during an economic decline. It can be hard to advocate for a transition to renewables when there is an overall economic crisis and the other sources of fuel are currently very cost effective. For the general consumer, there is uncertainty in their current income or no income at all that can make these types of purchases seem low priority, which has slowed the energy transition.
The interesting side effect of the world essentially locking down is the visualization of pollution reduction. Those actively pursuing a greener world can use this period as a case study to directly illustrate the cause and effect of shifting away from certain industrial processes. A study performed by IQAir has found a significant reduction in air pollution around the world due to the lockdowns and isolation of a majority of the global population. The analysis involves a review of a particular microscopic pollutant measured with the air over time. The study focused on ten major cities around the world within a three-week timeframe of the strictest part of the lockdown for that area. Overall, within these cities, there was up to a 60% reduction in this particulate relative to previous years. Although data like this is compelling, it is even more extraordinary to visually see the pollution reduction. Insider, a global news and lifestyle publication, compiled photographs from various sources of different cities that improved in a short period of time. Here are two example sets of photos from Insider that are astounding in their changes in such a short timeframe.
Pollution reduction on this scale can only mean forward thinking in the energy transition. There is now physical proof that can be referenced when discussing the possibilities. In general, many areas around the world are already working towards a phase out of coal. As of last month, there are officially three countries within Europe that have become coal free through the shutdown of their remaining coal power plants. Many other countries have also pledged to shut down their coal plants within the next 20 years as well. As coal is phased out and renewable energy systems increase, there is a need for a stabilizer for the grid. Coal also served as steady power generation, with the ability to guarantee supply. The intermittency of most renewable sources does lead to an opening for energy storage to shine and fill in these much-needed roles. There is an opportunity here to push sustainable energy sources forward through forward-thinking policies and regulations, which can lead to much-needed job creation.
Here at Nilar, we know that there is going to be a slow ramp up to where the energy industry once was. In reality, things may never return back to “normal”. With all of the environmental improvements seen, the lockdown has been eye-opening on how much can be achieved over a short period of time. It is obvious this major shutdown cannot be sustained and there will be a gradual return of many industrial processes as countries reopen. However, there is an opportunity here to evolve our approach moving forward. It is our belief that we will all come to embrace the new normal. The world of tomorrow can push innovation in data computing and processing to accommodate the prospective shift to remote work environments. This will only benefit the power of automation and control. Supply chains of all categories can be revamped to ensure that the essentials will not be out of reach again. The hope is that this will push industries towards recyclability and a circular economy. Ultimately, we can imagine a renewed spirit in the pursuit of a sustainability, with safety and reliability being key motivators. This will be the time for the energy storage industry to be in the forefront of the energy revolution and for companies to come together with a common goal of accessibility to the masses. We are getting ready…are you?
21 April 2020
At Nilar, we are convinced that Nilar Hydride® batteries are the key solution for energy storage for us and for future generations.
Listen to Richard Howlett, Senior Technology Executive & Head of US Operations, describing the historical journey of the Nilar Hydride® (NiMH) batteries and his take on why battery energy storage is a reliable energy source.
16 April 2020
The Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA) has selected a research project by Professor Dag Noréus and Dr Yang Shen for this year’s IVA 100 list.
The list highlights a range of prominent research projects from Swedish universities, all related to sustainability.Through the research project Professor Dag Noréus and Dr. Yang Shen have developed a method for multiplying the lifetime of nickel-metal hydride batteries. This ultimately means that the batteries can handle a lot of more charging cycles without losing capacity. The new method restores the batteries once they start to wear out. Other rechargeable batteries must be melted down in order to be recycled into a new set of batteries.
“It’s pleasant to see that IVA recognizes the Nilar Hydride battery development.”
– Dag Noréus
“I’m happy that our research resulted in something that actually gives batteries the positive effect on the environment that we all want to see.”
– Yang Shen
Click here to read more about Dag & Yang’s research project.
7 April 2020
We wanted to reshare this post from 2018 regarding the safety aspects of our NiMH batteries.
If you haven’t yet had the chance to read this post click here to read more about Nickel metal hydride and the benefit the technology brings.
2 April 2020
What new insights regarding energy consumption is given when a larger amount of people works from home? What effect on the energy landscape could we see in a longer term?
Click here to read this article from Microgrid knowledge to learn more.
23 March 2020
According to India Smart Grid Forum, India is likely to require energy storage capacity of over 2,400 Gigawatt Hours by 2032. The requirement is in order to supply energy needs for major sectors of the economy.
“The government wants non-fossil fuel based power projects to account for 40 per cent of the total electricity generation capacity by 2030. This requires radical measures to scale up the share of renewable energy. India has embarked on a target of 450 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030.”
Click here to read the full article regarding India’s required energy storage capacity.
18 March 2020
The current pandemic has not passed by anyone unnoticed or unaffected – our daily routines are to say the least impacted. The world is left with an uncertainty of when things will operate as usual. However, our combined interest and priority is the well-being of all individuals, which is something that unifies us all over the globe.
Nilar is participating in our shared responsibility of keeping indoors and working from home as far as possible.
In between online meetings and conferences while working remotely, the opportunity to read up on interesting articles are given. On a brighter note – we wanted to share this interesting article that indicates that the future of energy storage looks very promising.
Renewables will host 80% of all direct energy sector jobs by 2050 according to scientists from Finland’s Lappeenranta University of Technology.
Click here to read the full article of the estimates around the jobs energy storage will create.