HPS: Year-round electricity storage for buildings increases security of supply

The invasion of Ukraine and Germany’s dependence on Russian natural gas show how vulnerable our energy system is.

“A stable energy supply independent of fossil fuels from Russia or other countries is one of the key challenges of the coming years. To achieve this, an energy supply based on sun and wind is important, but this can only be achieved all year round with seasonal electricity storage systems.”

says Zeyad Abul-Ella, co-founder and managing director of the Berlin-based company HPS Home Power Solutions GmbH (HPS). HPS offers picea, the world’s first year-round electricity storage system for buildings available on the market.

The decentralized generation and use of renewable energy in combination with electricity storage is key to a robust energy system that reduces the import of energy sources as much as possible. In addition, seasonal electricity storage for a renewable energy supply offers clear predictability of energy supply and costs, which is highly important in times of an uncertain supply situation and volatile energy prices.

“The combination of photovoltaic systems, heat pumps and seasonal hydrogen-based electricity storage in buildings can make Germany’s energy supply more independent and reduce fossil energy demand.”

Abul-Ella emphasizes.

The federal government plans to install 6 million heat pumps and 15 million registered e-cars by 2030. Electricity demand will more than double for owner-occupied homes due to the use of heat pumps and e-cars. To achieve the goals, the federal government provides funding.

Photovoltaic (PV) roof systems will make an important contribution to meeting the increased demand for electricity. In the annual balance, many PV systems feed more electricity into the grid than is required for self-supply of electricity and/or heat. However, PV systems in particular often feed electricity into the grid when there is a surplus of electricity anyway. This can lead to negative prices on the electricity market, possibly to grid bottlenecks and curtailment of PV systems. CO2 avoidance is then lower because electricity from renewable sources is not used.

In contrast, in the case of an undersupply of renewable energy in the power grid, as is often the case during the winter months, buildings have so far had a significant demand for electricity from the grid at a time when electricity is CO2-intensive. In winter 2020, fossil fuels accounted for more than 60 percent of the electricity mix.

PV systems with seasonal electricity storage combined with heat pumps can solve this problem, as the heat supply in winter can thus be covered with solar electricity from the summer – without burdening the grids or having to rely on electricity from reserve power plants. This combination is the “dream team” of the energy transition.

“There is another important aspect, time! In contrast to the industrial scale, seasonal electricity storage systems for buildings do not first need to have their own infrastructure built up. Such systems are available on the market from German production and are already in use. Installation can take place immediately. Approval procedures are not required. Therefore, homeowners can achieve planning security for their energy supply today in new construction or in existing buildings by using renewable energy and seasonal electricity storage. This immediately reduces fossil fuel consumption and directly protects the environment, which is a critical factor given the short time remaining to reduce CO2 emissions and meet the 1.5 degree target.”

says Abul-Ella.

About picea

picea is the world’s first marketable hydrogen-based seasonal electricity storage system for buildings. The surpluses generated by a solar system on sunny days are stored as green hydrogen and made available again in the dark season in the form of electricity and heat. picea enables CO2-free power supply all year round. Per year, a picea system avoids about three tons of CO2. This corresponds to the amount that 130 spruce trees bind in a year. picea has received several prestigious awards, most recently the Handelsblatt Energy Award, the smarter E Award and the Berlin-Brandenburg Innovation Award.

About HPS Home Power Solutions

HPS develops and produces integrated systems for the storage and use of solar energy based on green hydrogen for homes, apartment buildings as well as commercial properties. The Berlin-based company was founded in 2014 by Zeyad Abul-Ella and Dr. Henrik Colell and stands for security, independence and sustainability in decentralized power supply. For more information visit: www.homepowersolutions.de

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