US battery maker sees “tremendous opportunity” with Australian utilities

In a week where energy security has dominated both Australian politics and news headlines, another major contender in the global energy storage market, US company SimpliPhi Power, has been meeting with some of the nation’s top utilities about grid-scale battery solutions to address Australia’s electricity market problems.

SimpliPhi CEO Catherine Von Burg has been in Australia this week, hosted by local distributor DPA Solar, to review the company’s first year of battery system sales, and to assess the level of demand for both its small-scale residential and commercial battery storage products, and its utility-scale solutions.

Von Burg says that SimpliPhi, which has more than 7MWh of its lithium iron phosphate battery storage deployed around the world, sees “tremendous opportunities” in Australia in working with utilities and transmission companies.

And remarkably, she says she has found that Australian energy companies are “more progressive” than their US counterparts, in that they already “get” the economics of battery storage.

“Utilities here in Australia and in NZ are looking at the economics and seeing that distributed renewable generation with storage is more economical that running a new transmission line or upgrading an old transmission line,” Von Burg told RenewEconomy in an interview on Friday morning.

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