The second staging of Energy Storage

- International Summit for the Storage of Renewable Energies - in Düsseldorf, Germany, attracted over 530 participants from 33 countries and 45 exhibitors. The conference and accompanying exhibition was organized by Messe Düsseldorf in cooperation with Solarpaxis AG. The event is regarded as one of the industry's most important meetings. Experts from science, industry and politics came together with the aim of advancing practical and economical storage system solutions for renewable energy.

"Research into energy storage is important. However, before we are able to reduce costs and encourage developments, we need a market and good general conditions," remarked Prof. Dr. Eicke R. Weber, Spokesman for the Fraunhofer Energy Alliance und Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems. He also acted as the Conference Chairman at Energy Storage 2013.

Peter Altmaier, Germany's Federal Environment Minister, also attended the event. "The most cost-effective and competitive solutions will be the ones that prevail," he explained regarding the technologies needed to transform the energy policy. Despite limited public funds for the energy storage sector, he encouraged the conference participants and emphasized his plan to get the energy storage program underway as planned by May 1, 2013, despite the fact that the funding issue has not been resolved yet.

In her keynote speech, Hildegard Müller, Chairwoman of the General Executive Management Board at the German Association of Energy and Water Industries, pleaded for a transparent competition in which the most efficient technologies would prevail. To reach this goal, the government would need to establish the right general conditions. "Unfortunately, we are still faced with the problem of contradictory political statements from all the parties," stated Hildegard Müller.

Energy storage systems can take the burden off power grids and reduce dependency on unstable sources of energy in developing and threshold countries. Many of the conference participants were interested in getting information on how the energy supply system can be made more flexible. "Flexibility is the latest hot topic in energy supply," summarized Janice Lin from the California Energy Storage Alliance. Flexibility was also the theme of the panel discussion with Brian Caffey from the China Energy Storage Alliance, Rahul Walawalkar from the India Energy Storage Alliance, Rick Winter from UniEnergy Technologies and Jonathan Dogterom from MaRS Discovery District, Canada.

Although energy supply is becoming more flexible all over the world, the starting conditions vary greatly from country to country. "While Germany is concentrating on changing its energy supply system, countries such as China and India have to ensure a stable energy supply in the first place," explained Karl-Heinz Remmers, Chairman of the Board at Solarpraxis AG.

"Generating and storing renewable energy is not something that only concerns Germany," added Hans Werner Reinhard, Deputy Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf. "That is why we have started to export the successful concept of Energy Storage Düsseldorf to other countries. We can then adapt it with the help of competent partners and develop it further." Energy Storage North America (ENSA) will take place in San José, California, from September 10 – 12, 2013, Energy Storage India (ESI) is scheduled for December 4 – 6, 2013 in Mumbai and there will be an Energy Storage preview at the China International Technology Fair in Shanghai from May 8 – 11, 2013.

Two workshops rounded off the program at Energy Storage 2013: the Energy Storage Production Technology Forum and the application workshop "Technology & Project Implementation Practices". Necessary standards in the storage sector were a recurring theme in these workshops. "It is hard for customers to compare systems without a set of standards," commented Martin Rothert from SMA Off-Grid Solutions. In his closing words, Prof. Dr. Eicke R. Weber stressed that collecting and merging energy storage system performance data was the "homework for the industry before the next conference".

With 45 exhibitors at the exhibition part of Energy Storage 2013, there were significantly more companies than at the first event in 2012. The conference participants welcomed the opportunity to get information and view sample applications at the stands of industry companies, associations and research institutes.

The next Energy Storage will take place in Düsseldorf, Germany from March 25 - 27, 2014. Next year's program will have a stronger focus on concrete business models while the accompanying exhibition will concentrate more on the presentation of marketable solutions and applications for storage system.

For further information on visiting or exhibiting at Energy Storage 2014, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601. Telephone: (312) 781-5180; Fax: (312) 781-5188; E-mail:; Visit our web site; Subscribe to our blog at; Follow us on twitter at

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