Stem Inc. receives DOE grant for solar storage project

Written By: Stratton Report
January 20, 2016


On January 20, Stem, Inc., an energy storage provider, announced a $2.4 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative and a matching $2.4 million from Hawaiian Electric. Stem’s project, “Integrating System to Edge-of-Network Architecture and Management (SEAMS) for SHINES Technologies on High Penetration Grids,” aims to streamline grid planning and operations for utilities in regions with high concentrations of distributed generation resources.

Stem is partnering with the Hawaiian Electric Companies on the project, which received federal funding under the “Sustainable and Holistic Integration of Energy Storage and Solar PV” (SHINES) program.

Dora Nakafuji, Director of Hawaiian Electric’s Renewable Energy Planning Division noted:

“The distribution grid today is trying to cope with rapid increases in bi-directional flow of distributed generation resources. Because of limited point-to-point visibility and controls to grid operation centers on distribution grids, a sudden influx or drop off of DG in local pockets can have adverse and costly impacts.”

As part of the three-year project, Stem will deploy storage systems at local businesses on O’ahu, Maui and Hawai’i Island and integrate them with the Hawaiian Electric Companies’ existing island-wide energy management systems. For the first time, grid operators will be able to schedule and manage customer-sited resources, including energy storage, alongside traditional fossil fuel-fired generation resources from their existing control platforms.

Tad Glauthier, Vice President of Hawaii Operations at Stem remarked: “By providing increased visibility and control of customer-sited resources, Stem is adding a new arrow to utilities’ quivers and turning a challenge into a solution. This project not only supports Hawaii’s goal of 100-percent renewable energy by 2045, but also serves as a replicable model for global energy companies of how today’s distributed resources can truly compete with traditional, fossil fuel-based alternatives.”