Thermal energy storage represents another type of energy storage that helps customers manage their electricity demand. This type of energy storage technology stores energy produced in the form of heat or cold for use at a different time. The Ice Bear energy storage technology produces ice at night when demand for electricity is low and uses that ice during the day to efficiently deliver cooling directly to a building's existing air conditioning system. Redding Electric Utility's (REU) distributed energy storage for air conditioning systems uses the Ice Bear technology to reduce REU's peak electricity demand while helping to flatten the utility's annual electricity demand growth. The Ice Bear technology uses a different energy storage concept than many other projects do; because they don't inject electricity back into the grid or inject electricity locally. Instead, it shifts electricity demand from peak hours of the day to lower periods in the night. REU's use of the Ice Bear technology has been operating successfully for more than 10 years and provides up to a 95% reduction in cooling-related peak demand according to the evaluation of this demonstration project.
Demonstrating the value of energy storage to provide:
- Renewable integration
Type of Technology
Thermal – thermal energy storage temporarily stores energy produced in the form or heat or cold for use at a different time. For this technology, ice is produced at night and is incorporated into the building’s cooling system to lower demand for electricity during the day.
- Power Capacity Rating: 3.6 MW in 2015
- Energy Capacity Rating: 936 MWh in 2014
- Type of Energy Storage: Thermal Energy Storage – integrated to offset direct expansion refrigerant-based air conditioning (20 tons or less).
Key Developers and Partners
- Ice Energy
- Redding Electric Utility
- Local/Redding heating, ventilation and air conditioning trades
- Local/Redding engineering firms
- Ice Energy Holdings, Inc., CALMAC
Energy Commission Funding
3.6 MW installed, another 3 MW will be installed by the end of 2017.