Storage: heart of the energy transition
Storage technologies as a solution, not a problem
The “International Renewable Energy Storage Conference” (IRES), which has just ended, was dedicated to the central key topic of the energy transition, storage technologies, from September 20 to 22 at Messe Düsseldorf. Since 2006, IRES has been organized by EURSOLAR e.V., the first decade in Berlin and its own exhibition, then from 2016 in cooperation with Messe Düsseldorf. As in previous years, international scientists and experts came together to exchange the latest research on storage technologies for renewable energy, as well as to discuss experiences in concrete applications.
In their more than 80 contributions, the international speakers highlighted the immense progress in the development of storage solutions.
Prof Peter Droege, EUROSOLAR President: “The IRES shows again how meaningful and effective partnerships of associations, communities, entrepreneurs, universities, politics and industry are in the implementation of the energy transition. The double challenge of war and climate destabilization proves: RES and its storage are the existential infrastructure of our time.”
Lectures, panel discussions and face-to-face meetings in the context of two major industrial exhibitions gained even more depth and relevance this year: be it on resilience strengthening, self-sufficiency through renewables, distribution flexibility, sector coupling and decentralization, on market convergence or on new business models. Visitors, speakers and organizers all agree on one thing: storage technologies are of central importance for the transformation of our industries and societies towards a CO2-neutral way of production and living. Dr. Peter Schossig from Fraunhofer ISE, for example, emphasized the growing importance of storage for decarbonizing industrial processes; here, too, renewable energies must be increasingly used and efficiency increased. Therefore, this year’s conference was dedicated to this topic.
Cross-section between science, politics and industry
Together with the parallel Expo for Decarbonised Industries (decarbXpo), organized by Messe Düsseldorf, joint visitors were able to learn about and discuss technical-scientific, economic-practical and regulatory-political aspects of the energy transition and the potentials of modern storage technologies. The more than 100 exhibitors at decarbXpo showed how diverse the possible applications of storage are and for which innovative solutions the market entry is imminent.
On the first day, the IRES conference took place on the premises of the concurrent decarbXpo in Hall 9 at Forum 1. In the morning, the two keynotes by Prof. Dolf Gielen, Director of the IRENA Innovation and Technology Centre, and Dr. Harry Lehmann, Head of PtX Lab Lausitz, thematically introduced the necessity of storage technologies for a sustainable transformation of our energy and economic system. The joint official opening with Messe Düsseldorf took place at 12 noon. Wolfram Diener, CEO and President of Messe Düsseldorf, Prof. Peter Droege, President of EUROSOLAR e.V., Michael Theben, Head of Department at the Ministry of Economics of North Rhine-Westphalia, and Peter Müller-Baum, Managing Director Power-to-X for Applications of VDMA jointly opened the IRES, the DecarbXpo, and the P2X Conference.
In the afternoon, keynotes and discussion contributions provided an outlook and a foretaste of the IRES conference on September 21 and 22 in Hall 8b. In three parallel thematic sessions, scientists from all over the world presented and discussed their research. The poster exhibition in Hall 9 offered the opportunity to display further research results in the form of posters and present them to the visitors.
Plenary sessions, topic-specific lecture series and discussion panels will present around 80 papers including a poster exhibition. The conference language is English.
This year’s IRES has clearly shown the advanced state of storage technologies, but also provided approaches for further research and development. In the coming years, EUROSOLAR e.V. will continue to offer a platform for international exchange within the framework of IRES and to promote the dissemination and application of these future technologies. The prerequisite is the rapid unleashing and removal of legal and fiscal hurdles.