Article

Energy storage deployment and innovation for the clean energy transition

  • Nature Energy 2, Article number: 17125 (2017)
  • doi:10.1038/nenergy.2017.125
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Abstract

The clean energy transition requires a co-evolution of innovation, investment, and deployment strategies for emerging energy storage technologies. A deeply decarbonized energy system research platform needs materials science advances in battery technology to overcome the intermittency challenges of wind and solar electricity. Simultaneously, policies designed to build market growth and innovation in battery storage may complement cost reductions across a suite of clean energy technologies. Further integration of R&D and deployment of new storage technologies paves a clear route toward cost-effective low-carbon electricity. Here we analyse deployment and innovation using a two-factor model that integrates the value of investment in materials innovation and technology deployment over time from an empirical dataset covering battery storage technology. Complementary advances in battery storage are of utmost importance to decarbonization alongside improvements in renewable electricity sources. We find and chart a viable path to dispatchable US$1 W−1 solar with US$100 kWh−1 battery storage that enables combinations of solar, wind, and storage to compete directly with fossil-based electricity options.

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Acknowledgements

We thank the Karsten Family Foundation and the Zaffaroni Family Foundation for generous support. N.K. thanks the NSF-GRFP and Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry (NSF, Grant No. 1144885). F.L. thanks CDTM for ongoing continuous support.

Author information

Affiliations

  1. Energy and Resources Group, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, California 94720, USA

    • Noah Kittner
    •  & Daniel M. Kammen
  2. Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, California 94720, USA

    • Noah Kittner
    • , Felix Lill
    •  & Daniel M. Kammen
  3. Center for Digital Technology and Management, TU Munich, Arcisstraße 21, 80333 Munich, Germany

    • Felix Lill
  4. Goldman School of Public Policy, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, California 94720, USA

    • Daniel M. Kammen

Authors

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Contributions

N.K. conceived and N.K. and F.L. designed the study. N.K., F.L. and D.M.K. collected data. N.K. and F.L. analysed data and wrote the paper. F.L. ran the statistical test. D.M.K. supervised the research, guided the study, and edited the paper.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Daniel M. Kammen.

Supplementary information

PDF files

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    Supplementary Information

    Supplementary Figures 1–3, Supplementary Tables 1–22, Supplementary Notes 1–3 and Supplementary References.

Excel files

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    Supplementary Data 1

    Price, volume, and patent dataset.