Energy tech StorTera lands £1.6m to power Scot-Canadian pilot

An Edinburgh-based energy storage firm is aiming to ­turbocharge development of its battery technology and help to usher in a low-carbon future after securing seven-figure funding.

Tuesday, 25th June 2019, 11:40 am
From left: Mihika Perera, Neil Taylor, Gavin Park, Pasidu Pallawela and Brenda Park from the StorTera team. Picture: Contributed

StorTera, together with its Canadian partner Equilibrium Engineering, has ­succeeded in winning CAD$2.6 million (£1.6m) to implement its advanced battery storage ­system, which it describes as the “next generation of smart grid technology”.

The pair secured backing as part of the Power ­Forward Challenge, a joint initiative between the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Natural Resources Canada designed to drive technological innovation in the clean energy sector.

StorTera’s pilot Alba Nova: A Smart Grid Pilot Using Advanced Battery Storage will use the funding to implement commercial and domestic ­battery systems with in-built artificial intelligence, which can optimise smart grid ­performance.

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The Scottish firm said its innovation will demonstrate how its intelligent and distributed energy storage systems can increase uptake of renewables, save money for customers and utilities, and accelerate carbon reductions by boosting the use of electric energy.

Upon completion in March 2021, the winning pilot project will be awarded a prize of CAD$1m. Four UK-based and three Canada-based teams have been selected to demonstrate their smart grid innovations, securing funding at a pitching event before an expert panel in Ottawa.

The Power Forward Challenge seeks innovations to develop “clean, robust and flexible” power grids and ­energy systems capable of anticipating and meeting the needs of networks around the world.

Alba Nova is run in partnership with the Nova ­Scotian town of Berwick and the Renewable Energy Storage Lab at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada.

StorTera chief executive Gavin Park said the business had designed “a highly scalable model” that could be rolled out quickly anywhere.

He added: “This is a great opportunity to develop strong, collaborative links with Canada to demonstrate the future of electric grids and share our expertise globally.

“Our technology utilises simple architecture that is self-optimising and dispatchable by the grid operator.

“We have formed a great team and partnership with Equilibrium Engineering and we look forward to delivering this exciting project together.”