Centrica Business Solutions partners with U.S. Department of Energy on battery storage trial

Second-life EV batteries to help lower cost and expand applications for hybrid energy storage technology.

Centrica’s distributed energy and power business, Centrica Business Solutions, is to partner with the United States Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) on a trial that aims to explore the integration of multiple energy storage technologies, including second life batteries from electric vehicles.

Working from the NREL’s Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF), the research team will develop and demonstrate how hybrid battery storage technology could help tackle a variety of challenges to the grid including renewable intermittency and emergency back-up power.

The project will also use Centrica’s proprietary battery storage and control systems to manage new and second-life batteries as a single unit, which can then be used to bolster the infrastructure to support commercial electric vehicle charging.

Fabio Mantovani, Director of Technology Strategy and Innovation for Centrica Business Solutions said: “We are excited to embark on this work with NREL. This project will open the door to using energy storage to meet multiple customer needs as a single, integrated solution. Battery storage is a key component of the energy system of the future and a priority growth area for Centrica Business Solutions. Working with the energy systems integration team at NREL is the ideal environment to help us bring game changing technologies to market.”     

Martha Symko-Davies, Laboratory Program Manager, ESIF at NREL, said: “NREL’s team is thrilled to be partnering with Centrica on this project and to support the development of capabilities to further integrate renewable energy resources into the electricity grid.” 

Centrica Business Solutions has already delivered several pioneering battery storage projects in Europe including the 49MW Roosecote battery in Cumbria, which is one of the largest storage facilities in Europe. The business has also partnered with battery supplier, Tesla, and the Belgian Transmission System Operator to deliver the first large-scale, multi-asset Virtual Power Plant to stabilise the European power grid.