The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST) and DNV KEMA Energy & Sustainability, a leading global energy consultancy and authority in testing, inspection and certification, today outlined their new partnership whereby nearly $23 million will be invested to build and grow the new Battery and Energy Storage Technology (BEST) Testing and Commercialization Center in Rochester, New York.
Under the partnership agreement, DNV KEMA will provide investments of up to $16 million, including re-location of its existing energy storage testing operations from its laboratory facility in Pennsylvania to the new Center at Eastman Business Park in Rochester. NY-BEST will provide the initial investment of $6.9 million from State grant funds into capital facility improvements and purchase of additional advanced testing equipment for the Center.
The new Test and Commercialization Center will provide the key missing elements necessary for product commercialization and growth in the energy storage business, including a suite of test, validation and independent certification capabilities to accelerate commercial deployment of energy storage technologies. These capabilities—while vital to the commercialization of emerging technologies—are difficult for individual companies to procure, and not presently available in reasonable geographic proximity or at reasonable cost. Through their partnership, NY-BEST and DNV KEMA will deploy shared resources to build a world class testing and commercialization facility and establish New York State as a powerful beacon to the world relative to developing and manufacturing advanced energy storage solutions.
"Many global leaders in energy storage technology research and development and manufacturing call New York home. The BEST Testing and Commercialization Center fills an important gap that currently exists in the product development process for batteries and energy storage technologies," said Dr. William Acker, Executive Director of NY-BEST. "NY-BEST is honored and proud to be partnering with DNV KEMA to create the BEST Testing and Commercialization Center. We look forward to working together to solidify the Center’s role as a magnet to attract and grow the energy storage industry here in New York State."
"DNV KEMA's investment in the BEST Test and Commercialization Center is a strong indication of our commitment to continuous growth for our Testing, Inspection and Certification (TIC) business," states Hugo van Nispen, Chief Operating Officer, Americas Division, DNV KEMA. "Our vision to launch a test and certification facility to serve the rapidly emerging energy storage industry with distinction, made the decision to partner with NY-BEST an obvious one. Our legacy as an independent global authority in testing and certification, combined with the expertise of thousands of dedicated energy consultants, ensure that the new Center will provide timely analysis and response to the expanding commercialization and test issues within this emerging market." Mr. van Nispen added, "We see energy storage as a crucial option for the transition to a more flexible supply of electricity that will be required as more intermittent renewable and distributed energy options are connected into the grid."
NY-BEST, a consortium of battery and energy storage companies, universities and industry partners, has received $6.9 million in combined funding from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and Empire State Development Corporation (ESD) toward the creation of the battery and energy storage commercialization center. To leverage the State funds, NY-BEST, through a competitive solicitation, sought a private partner with specialized expertise to invest in and operate the Center. DNV KEMA was the selected partner, both due to their strong global TIC presence, but also due to their broad capabilities in the T&D and renewables energy consulting business.
The BEST Test and Commercialization Center will be a unique asset for the energy storage industry, offering testing from single cells to megawatt systems. Services will include product development, performance validation and certification testing, along with a wide range of environmental testing capabilities and battery lifetime testing. These services will accelerate the adoption and growth of energy storage technologies.
Work is underway to construct the Center which will be located at Building 308 of the Eastman Business Park. Construction is slated to be completed by fall of 2013, with the Center opening planned for December 2013.
A recent Economic Impact Study commissioned by NY-BEST estimated that the energy storage sector currently employs approximately 3,000 people in New York State and is responsible for more than $600 million in annual global sales. The study found that the sector could grow more than 11,400 new jobs by 2020 and 43,000 new jobs by 2030. The BEST Testing and Commercialization Center will serve as a key catalyst and magnet for attracting and growing the battery and energy storage industry in New York.
In December 2011, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced $3.5 million in State funding for NY-BEST toward the creation of a battery and energy storage product commercialization center at Eastman Business Park. The funds were awarded by the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council as part of the Governor's competitive regional economic development process. NY-BEST has received an additional $3.4 million in State grant funds for the Center from NYSERDA bringing the total State funding for the project to $6.9 million.