As part of our Countdown to COP campaign, Utility Week presents a showcase of some of the most promising energy storage technologies. Tom Grimwood explores the potential – and the limitations – of solutions ranging from flow batteries to liquid air energy storage and the use of gravity, among others.

By Tom Grimwood

Latest articles

SP Energy Networks has successfully trialled the “world’s first” real-time fault level measurement system on a section of its network. The distribution network operator said the device developed by Outram Research achieved an error margin of less than 1 per cent at 11kV, “far outperforming” the 5 per cent margin it was originally targeting.
News
Adding biodiversity to sites is already a goal for most utilities, but soon they will be working to a tough new target of 10% biodiversity net gains under the Environment Bill. Katie Dawson, Costain’s lead on Geographical Information Systems for the environment, explains what’s involved.
Interviews
Digital Catapult has launched a cross-sector IoT Discovery programme, offering organisations 1-2-1 support on investing in IoT, with Northern Gas Networks participating in the first cohort. Rukmini Prasad, product and partnerships manager for IoT at the Digital Catapult, answers UW Innovate’s questions.
Interviews

Editor’s picks

The arrival of greater distributed energy on the network is good news for the transition to net zero. But it brings with it new issues and challenges for network operators. S&C Electric explore how networks can mitigate a potential increase in fault current levels.
Opinion
The energy transition is driving transmission and distribution network operators to adopt new methods that facilitate multidirectional power flows. As part of our Countdown to COP series, Prash Desai of Burns & McDonnell discusses the role digital substations will play in that process.
Opinion
Partial Discharge (PD) Surveys are crucial for network operators to minimise the risk of erosion in insulation failure resistance in transformers, switchgear, generators, and other electrical equipment. But monitoring assets for PD isn’t straightforward. Experts from Megger explain why.
Opinion
SP Energy Networks has launched a new "industry-first" app that uses smart phone cameras and artificial intelligence to identify and catalogue network assets and customer devices. The distribution network operator said the iDentify app allows asset data to be gathered directly by field staff as well as third-party installers of low-carbon technologies.
News
Networking infrastructure represents a real turning point for the utilities sector. To date organisations have been constrained by the fixed nature of their legacy networking communications infrastructure, and the technical challenges to keep up to date. Digital transformation is the only viable option to drive productivity gains through the whole organisation and in their IT infrastructure. Download this free report on the topic.
Downloads
DNOs regularly publish Distribution Future Energy Scenarios, but these often overlook the developing complexity on the low voltage networks. As UW Innovate reports, WPD has now devised a new methodology, called EPIC, to capture data from local authorities and use it for more sensitive and localised analysis.
Analysis
Building a 'smart network' where data can accelerate decarbonisation and cut operating costs is an agenda-setting priority for every distribution and transmission company. Already, network companies have chalked up their first trials and even moved into 'Business As Usual' territory. But as a recent debate and workshop discussion at the Utility Week Live Summit showed, there is still a long way to go.
Analysis
Electricity North West has become the fifth distribution network operator to join the Flexible Power platform originally developed by Western Power Distribution as part of an Ofgem-sponsored innovation project.
News
UK Power Networks (UKPN) has launched a new online portal that enables installers to get quicker and easier decisions on whether they can connect green technologies such as electric vehicle chargers, heat pumps, solar panels and batteries. The electricity distribution network said Smart Connect was developed in partnership with Octopus Electric Vehicles in response to feedback from customers, who said the old process was confusing and time-consuming.
News
Energy Systems Catapult is adding smart electric vehicle (EV) charging capabilities to its Living Lab of real-world smart homes. Cloud-based smart charging software developed by ev.energy will be incorporated into its new digital integration platform allowing suppliers, aggregators and home technology providers to trial new products and services in the 200 connected homes that now make up the lab.
News
UK Power Networks has asked small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to express their future transport needs as it seeks to develop a strategy to assist them in making the switch to electric vehicles. The distribution network operator said it is keen to ensure that SMEs, which unlike larger firms may lack the time, resources or information to make the transition, are not left behind in getting the charging infrastructure they require.
News
An official for Cambridge City Council has raised concerns over a “headlong rush” towards air-source heat pumps, saying there are “lots of problems” with the technology, particularly within urban areas. Environmental quality and growth manager Jo Dicks made the comments during a discussion of retrofitting as part of Utility Week’s Future of Heat conference.
News
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