In the last decades, we have seen a tremendous growth of distributed power production from renewable sources on a local and regional level. For stakeholders to maintain grid stability and optimise their business models, they need to invest in safe, affordable and sustainable power storage capacity. Many SMEs in the NWE area have developed these solutions, but they have a hard time validating their products. Transnational action is needed to benefit from their innovations. Otherwise, traditional battery products from overseas corporates will outpace them – they already supply 80% of the mid-size storage market in the EU. STEPS will tackle the two main challenges keeping North-West European businesses from becoming competitive:
Limited access to test beds: Emerging energy storage products often take years to reach pre-commercial TRL. Having access to testing sites is crucial for any SME’s pathway to commercialisation and market-access and, ultimately, to drive innovation and job creation in NWE.
Fragmented regulation: Each country has its own energy market regulations which influence a products’ technical specifications and the profitability of the business model.
There are three key pillars for creating a transnational environment in which innovative, sustainable and safe energy storage products can be developed more efficiently with maximised commercial usability and international competitiveness: