Technology Merit: Smart Grid & Energy Management

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Stem for developing distributed, behind-the-meter energy storage products that combine reliable battery hardware with intelligent software to help businesses reduce and predict energy bills without disrupting operations. Stem has worked with the Hawaiian Electric Company and California Independent System Operator on pilot projects, and in Q4 2014 it was selected by Southern California Edison to provide 85 MW of capacity. SCE's procurement process placed Stem's technology head-to-head with conventional assets like gas-fired power plants, proving Stem's solution is viewed as a viable alternative to costly, fossil fuel-based resources.

Southern California Edison for its investments in preparing for the electricity grid of the future. The investor-owned utility, which had revenue of $12.56 billion in 2013, is already operating in that future mode on some weekend days when a handful of its distribution circuits are 100% supplied by solar PV. SCE has a number of programs and initiatives underway to study and prepare for the grid of the future, some on its own initiative and others mandated by California legislators and regulators. When SCE purchased 261.6 MW of energy storage capacity in fall 2014 as part of a long term procurement plan, it exceeded by more than five times its energy storage mandate from the CPUC. In the voluntary category, SCE is running an $80 million advanced energy demonstration project (partially funded by federal Recovery Act funds) with UC Irvine to investigate how solar PV, energy storage, electric vehicles, demand response and smart grid technologies can play well together. At the bulk transmission level, SCE began in 2014 the demonstration phase of the Tehachapi Energy Storage Project, where a 32 MWH lithium-ion battery storage resource has been developed in the Tehachapi Wind Resource Area, where up to 4,500 MW of wind power capacity is expected to be operational by 2016. The demonstration project is being funded by SCE and by federal Recovery Act funds. "This installation will allow us to take a serious look at the technological capabilities of energy storage on the electric grid," said Imre Gyuk, energy storage program manager in DOE's Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability. "It will also help us to gain a better understanding of the value and benefit of battery energy storage."