European risk management provider, DNV GL will support the US government agency ARPA-E (Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy) to validate the performance of ARPA-E funded grid-storage and distributed energy (micro-grid) technologies over the next four years.

The technologies are aimed at providing a key role in the modernisation of electrical grids and focus on developing grid storage to enable cost-effective integration of increasing amounts of renewable and distributed energy.

Many of these technologies are still at an early stage and require more data on their performance, reliability, and safety through extended use under realistic grid conditions.

Together with its partners NY-BEST, Group NIRE and CAR Technologies, DNV GL will provide a combination of third-party testing facilities, innovative testing and analysis methodologies and expert oversight to enable objective and transparent evaluation of existing ARPA-E grid-storage technologies through a program called Cycling Hardware to Analyse and Ready Grid-Scale Electricity Storage (CHARGES).

A spokesperson for DNV-GL told Power Engineering International that the four year project “will increase the diversity of storage technologies, and demonstrate that life cycle testing and performance validation is more detailed than cycles to 80 per cent capacity.”

“This also paves the way to validating technologies beyond Li-ion. The future storage portfolio will likely be an aggregation of many storage devices and chemistries, as well as an aggregation of micro-grid and distributed resources.”

DNV GL will perform laboratory testing at the DNV GL BEST Test and Commercialization Center in Rochester, NY. DNV GL manages this lab in a partnership with NY-BEST. The storage technologies will be field tested in Group NIRE’s extensive micro-grid which includes wind turbines connected to the local distribution grid. In addition to testing, DNV GL will harness its Microgrid Optimiser (MGO) tool to model storage performance, bringing together modeling and testing under one program.

Through CHARGES, ARPA-E project teams working on grid-storage innovations will have a way to evaluate their technologies in both controlled environments and under realistic grid operating conditions early in their development cycle. Furthermore, this testing and validation will provide grid operators and utilities with reliable information about the performance characteristics, operating requirements, and life expectancy of emerging technologies.

“Through this project, ARPA-E is changing what’s possible in grid-storage and working to make the secure, reliable grid of the future a reality,” says DNV GL’s project manager Davion Hill.

The project will have a commercialisation advisory board comprising NAATBatt International, NY-BEST, NYSERDA (New York State Energy Research and Development Authority), Con Edison and South Plains Electric Cooperative.

DNV GL’s modeling tools recently informed the California Energy Commission and the California PUC on the 1.3 GW energy storage mandate that was established in that state. It has also advised a number of North American grid operators on how to integrate storage for ancillary services under FERC 755.

In addition the company is currently developing a state roadmap for storage with the California ISO, the CPUC, and the CEC and also launching a technology roadmap for the Netherlands on deploying storage.