U.S. Energy Department Releases Roadmap for 10-Year Energy Storage Program

The U.S. Energy Department on Dec. 21 released a roadmap for its Energy Storage Grand Challenge initiative, a 10-year program launched in January to expedite the development of next-generation storage technologies. The roadmap marks the department’s first comprehensive strategy to address energy storage. The program aims to establish and sustain U.S. leadership in energy storage utilization and exports, with a domestic manufacturing supply chain that does not depend on foreign sources of critical materials. To this end, the initiative establishes a set of goals to reach by 2030 in multiple areas including technology transfer, valuation, manufacturing, and workforce.

The roadmap establishes activities for five tracks: technology development, manufacturing and supply chain, technology transition, policy and valuation, and workforce development. The agency will track progress toward the manufacturing targets as well as production cost and performance targets.

Cost and performance targets identified in the program call for $0.05/kWh levelized cost of storage for long-duration stationary applications, a 90 percent reduction from 2020 baseline costs by 2030. This cost target would facilitate commercial viability of the technology across a broad range of applications including meeting peak demand load, preparing the grid for fast charging of electric vehicles, ensuring reliability of critical services. Over the last four fiscal years, the department has invested more than $1.6 billion into energy storage research and development, or $400 million per year, on average.

The initiative provides information on energy storage demand outside the U.S. and opportunities for domestic manufacturing. The department intends to collaborate with other federal agencies to identify competitive international markets for U.S. companies and create strategies to ensure U.S. competitiveness in the sector.

The department also released two companion reports – 2020 Grid Energy Storage Technology Cost and Performance Assessment and the Energy Storage Market Report 2020 – that provide information for the stakeholder community.

The global stationary and transportation combined annual energy storage market projections indicate a fourfold increase by 2030 to more than 2,500 GWh, from a 2018 baseline. The vast majority of the growth is attributed to the adoption of electric vehicles. Transportation annual storage deployments are projected to be 2-10 times that of stationary including pumped storage hydro, or PSH, depending on assumptions for mobility electrification.