Lack of proper energy storage systems is one of the main reasons that inhibit the sustainable growth of the cleantech industry, owing to factors like price spikes, security threats, instability, and volatility. This further leads to the dependence on non-renewable sources of energy as the primary source of energy. Energy storage systems help in storing energy and providing it when and where it is required. It balances variable renewable sources, boosts electric grid reliability and asset utilization, and enhances intermittency management and efficiency.
Cleantech industry is generally grouped into four sectors, namely energy generation, energy storage, energy efficiency, and energy infrastructure. Energy storage systems provide a wide variety of capabilities that positively impacts all these sectors.
Although the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates that renewable sources currently account only for 16-19 percent of the total electricity production, these numbers are expected to jump over 50 percent in the coming 50 years. These numbers require cleantech industries to think strategically to be successful.
The future of energy storage is open to plenty of opportunities. “Virtual storage” solutions aim to create intelligently distributed energy efficiency, while the concept of “building as battery” aims to build structures and systems that modify building energy usage. Evolution of superconductor technology is expected to upsurge all other technologies and emerge as the most important breakthrough in the cleantech industry.
The need to move to renewable sources of energy is expected to fuel the development of better energy storage systems. Efficient energy storage systems can provide electricity as and when required, thereby resulting in a more responsive energy market. Thus, collective efforts can lead to cleantech energy being the most dominant energy source of the century.