STEPS will strengthen the competitiveness of NWE innovative storage providers by using a user-centric, demand-driven approach to bring products closer to market. STEPS will drive down the time energy storage SMEs typically spend on technology demonstration before reaching market maturity from an average of 5 years to 1-2, while maintaining maximum commercial usability.
As the NWE is increasingly investing in distributed renewable energies (e.g. roof-mounted solar PV), the need for medium capacity energy storage solutions becomes apparent, with a market potential reaching €250bn by 2025. Heavily subsidized batteries from the US and Asia outpace EU suppliers through price-competition, and currently supply 80% of the storage market in NWE. Many of these mass-produced solutions are not tailored to the needs of local market segments including, e.g. housing providers, energy cooperatives and business parks. These use cases could benefit from tailored storage technologies, new technologies or adapted business models (e.g.Storage-as-a-Service).
Innovative NWE storage products are currently stuck at TRL5/6 and face significant barriers, ranging from fragmented regulations & funding sources, limited testing abilities and unawareness of final consumers.
In STEPS, business support and knowledge partners from IE, NL, BE, FR and UK will strengthen the competitiveness of NWE innovative storage providers by using a user-centric, demand-driven approach to bring products closer to market through tailored testing. Specific activities include:
1) Advising >200 e-storage local SMEs on entering new markets in NWE
2) Create market pull effects in NWE for new e-storage solutions by engaging with potential end-users needs and increase awareness of solution providers
3) Implementing a Support Programm that connects end-users with 20 providers of new e-storage solutions to increase their technological readiness level (TRL5/6 to 7) through real-life testing.