This year, ees Europe was characterized by a significant upturn in the market driven by plummeting costs. This has seen a 40% decrease in the price of small-scale lithium-ion storage devices up to 10 kWh in Germany since 2013. In the same time frame, large-scale storage systems up to 30 kWh have fallen in price by over 50%. And as a result, more than 20,000 new solar storage units were installed last year in Germany alone.
Many companies have recognized the potential of the storage market – including large companies from the automotive industry which are increasingly setting up battery production facilities. On these grounds, mobile storage and e-mobility played a central role at the well-attended E-mobility and Renewable Energy special exhibit, as well as at this year’s ees Europe. Electric vehicles, especially when fueled by energy from renewable sources, make an important contribution to the energy transition as efficient and climate-friendly mobility solutions. And due to the development of increasingly powerful batteries, electric vehicles are also gaining significance as storage resources. This was seen in exhibitors such as Tesla, who presented diverse solutions for e-mobility and charging infrastructure.
With the new Power2Drive Europe exhibition in 2018, the organizers will be focusing on the field of e-mobility more intensively than ever before. At Power2Drive, the spotlight will be on traction batteries and charging infrastructure for e-mobility. The fundamental issue of sector coupling, that is, the intelligent networking of electricity, heat and mobility, was an important topic across-the-board at ees Europe and one of the most discussed topics at the Smart Renewable Energy Forum and the Smart Renewable Energy special exhibit at the exhibition.
Large-scale storage systems also played an important role at this year’s ees Europe, with numerous exhibitors presenting their solutions in the field. “ees Europe is the most important date in the exhibition calendar because it opens up great opportunities for business and its excellent marketing attracts a first-class international customer base. We find the contacts to support the development of sustainable solutions for industry and commerce here at the exhibition. Although industry and commerce are the largest energy consumers, there is a certain lack of the kind of innovative storage solutions that we offer. It is a great pleasure for us to be at ees Europe,” says Daniel Hannemann, Managing Director at Tesvolt GmbH in Lutherstadt Wittenberg.
Thomas Speidel, Managing Director at ADS-TEC GmbH, Nürtingen, also emphasizes the importance of large-scale storage systems and innovative storage solutions in general for securing a networked, renewable energy supply in the future: “Storage devices are connectors, a bit like a spring. The more production and consumption fluctuates, the greater the challenge of matching supply and demand becomes at any precise moment. This is where a storage device serves as a balancing element. It does not act as a final user or producer, as is often assumed, but instead functions as a delay element. And we need such devices in the new energy systems and markets.”
The current industry trends in production, sales, installation and application of batteries and energy storage systems also played a major role at the ees Forum. The same is true for the winners of the ees AWARD 2017, which was presented at the Forum on May 31, 2017 to honor particularly innovative concepts and solutions from the energy storage industry – such as from Solarwatt GmbH, Dresden. The SOLARWATT Matrix concept creates a tailor-made energy storage system which can even be expanded into the megawatt-range. “We see storage devices as the last piece in the energy transition jigsaw puzzle, which will enable a decentralized energy supply for private households, industry and commerce. From an ecological point of view, it is important that energy is increasingly stored and consumed where it is also generated,” says Jörg Erdmann, Director of Marketing and Communication at Solarwatt.
Other winners included LG Chem Ltd., Seoul/South Korea, with their stand-alone battery module (SBM), a multi-purpose energy storage solution with a high energy density, and the Energy Depot Deutschland GmbH, Konstanz, with their CENTURIO Energy Storage System, a combined solution using a hybrid inverter and lithium-ion battery modules, enabling the yield from photovoltaic installations to be consumed directly or temporarily stored while incurring minimal losses.
The accompanying ees Europe Conference, held at the Internationales Congress Center München (ICM) offered participants an even deeper insight into the current trends. The hot topics at the two-day conference ranged from storage systems for private homes, commercial and industrial buildings, as well as e-mobility, to the developments in the most important markets, energy management and the political framework for the future energy economy. A total of over 1,700 visitors from 77 countries participated in the ees Europe Conference, the side events, and the Intersolar Europe Conference taking place in parallel, which constitutes growth of around 30% over the previous year.
From 2018, The smarter E will act as a strong link for a diverse range of events, covering renewable energy production, distribution, storage and the intelligent use of energy. In addition to Power2Drive Europe, another new event will be taking place under the umbrella brand for the very first time in Munich in 2018: EM-Power, the exhibition for intelligent energy use in industry and buildings. Together with Intersolar and ees Europe, a total of four leading energy exhibitions will be taking place under one roof from 2018. All four exhibitions are organized by Freiburg Wirtschaft Touristik und Messe GmbH & Co. KG (FWTM) and Solar Promotion GmbH, Pforzheim, and EM-Power is co-organized by Messe München GmbH.