Smart Battery Stores Cheap Electricity, Releases It When Costs Increase

These batteries are meant to cut down on a building’s electricity costs

By on November 6th, 2012 13:07 GMT

A new type of battery developed by an energy startup named Stem is supposedly capable of cutting down on electricity costs not just by carefully monitoring a building's energy consumption, but also by keeping itself up to date with electricity prices.

More precisely, the people who have developed these batteries claim that a software they are connected to allows them to somehow be “aware” of energy pricing trends.

This allows them to pick and choose the electricity they wish to store, meaning that only the cheapest of electricity will make its way in these smart batteries.

Moreover, they constantly compare and contrast the price of the electricity stored within them and the price of the energy made available by the grid. 

This means that a building is only allowed to rely on external electricity sources as long as this electricity is cheaper than the one provided by the batteries.

Technology Review
quotes Brian Thompson, the founder and executive vice president of Stem, who stressed that, “This sort of thing of thing was not possible five or six years ago.”

However, “As battery prices and the prices of computing and data and bandwidth drop, we’re going to see these types of devices in every building in the world, whether it’s in 20 or 30 years. The types of systems will allow us to move to a 100 percent renewable future.”

According to Brian Thompson, this new technology made available to the general public by Stem allows people to cut down on their monthly electricity costs by 10%-15%, without having to pay closer attention to how and when various electrical devices are used.

For the time being, these smart batteries are only used by several small and medium-sized businesses, the goal being to see whether or not the technology could be implemented on a larger scale.

“Stem gives businesses control over the one factor that, until now, they were helpless to deal with: out-of-control electricity charges. With a massive and growing database of usage versus cost patterns, Stem helps companies buy low and sell at high value,” the startup's official website reads.

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