Consolidated Edison, Inc(NYSE:ED) all set for New York Battery test

by Jack Bibey | Thursday, May 2, 2013 | 509 views

Northern, WI 05/02/2013 (usastockreport) – Consolidated Edison, Inc(NYSE:ED) (Closed:$63.32, Down by 0.52%) owns the utility that supplies New York City with power. As part of a research program that has been funded by the state, the company will test a battery system that has been developed by EoS Energy Storage LLC, next year. Consolidated Edison is a closely held company and its director of business development, Philippe Bouchard said that one of its zinc-air batteries that has 36 kilowatt-hours of storage capacity will be installed at a Con Edison facility located in New York City.

A city first
In a telephone interview, Bouchard said that this will be ESO’s first project to supply back-up power on that electrical grid. In the pipeline are larger installations that have been planned with Con Edison, independent power producers and utility owners. He said that Grid-scale energy storage is a market opportunity that has a multi-hundred dollar potential but also that there is a very obvious issue that has not been addressed by any product in the market. The issue is the about how supply and demand can be decoupe’d on the electricity grid.

The long-lasting option
Bouchard added that the New York City-based EoS is currently developing batteries for transportation and grid-scale applications. Its systems will be designed to be long-lasting and will operate efficiently for 3 decades. Next year, the company hopes that a minimum of six partners will test its batteries. Michael Oster, the Chief Executive Officer said that these will include a cross-section of the biggest utilities in the United States and Europe.

The cost threshold
The company has outlined plans to sell its grid-scale systems at the rate of $160 per kilowatt-hour. This cost would make them competitive with copper wire that is used in distribution and transmission upgrades as well as gas peaking plants. In the $300 per kilowatt-hour range, the batteries get really interesting he said and that is where the company can compete directly with these various technologies. However, Consolidated Edison’s primary goal is to cross that price threshold in a significant manner.

The New York Research and Development Authority has contributed a grant worth $250,000 for the project which in total costs $500,000. This funding will have to be matched by private funds said Bouchard. Five additional companies were also awarded around $1.15 million by the agency. These funds will be channelized towards the development of energy storage systems.

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