Boosting Energy Efficiency – How Storage Systems Can Help

Storage systems offer many benefits, including boosting energy efficiency. They can charge during periods when renewable energy is available and discharge when electricity costs and demand peak, helping you reduce your energy bills. Energy storage also helps rural communities and other areas disconnected from the larger electrical grid. By storing electricity and supplying it back to the grid at a time of high demand, these systems can help prevent power outages.

Improved Performance

Modern storage systems offer improved performance with higher speed and less latency to help boost productivity. Newer platforms also consume fewer watts of energy than older systems, allowing for more storage and lower costs. Network-attached storage (NAS) centralizes data across multiple computers for easy sharing and collaboration. This type of storage uses standard hardware to provide scalability and high availability. It’s best suited for file-based applications and allows administrators to set permissions to control access easily. Using Fibre Channel instead of Ethernet to connect servers and storage devices, SAN storage offers increased reliability and performance. It can be more expensive and complex to set up, but it’s better suited for larger workloads with more users. It’s also highly scalable, with many device options and configurations. Energy storage technologies capture and store electricity as another form of energy, such as a battery, and then release it on demand. This reduces the need to operate backup power plants emitting greenhouse gases and increases system efficiency by allowing renewable energy sources to match supply and demand closely.

Reduced Downtime

Storage systems save data and files in a permanent or temporary location that can be fetched later. They include USB drives, hard disk drives and cloud storage units. An energy storage system allows businesses to save energy from the grid or on-site renewables and use it during peak demand times, lowering their energy bills. Many commercial and industrial facilities are subject to demand charges, which can account for 50 percent or more of a business’s energy bill. Energy storage systems, especially with intelligent software, help customers avoid these expensive charges by matching power usage with energy generation. Energy storage systems are forecast to have rapid diffusion, especially for off-grid applications and supplying ancillary services to the distribution grid. For this reason, smart management strategies are essential for maximizing the energy efficiency of battery-based storage systems interfaced with the grid. This paper proposes a theoretical analysis based on real hardware testing that evaluates an up to 15.5% roundtrip efficiency increase for energy storage systems interfaced with the grid, resulting from energy savings in the charging and discharging phases.

Enhanced Data Security

Data storage solutions protect your business from technology glitches that could result in losing important files and historical archives. Backup storage systems and appliances create periodic copies of your application and data stored on a separate device for disaster recovery. Some can even offer backup-as-a-service, so you don’t need to buy your hardware. Data storage solutions’ scalability can also be increased via byte-level data splitting, which uses encryption to reduce the number of bits necessary to represent each piece of data. This can save tens of percent of storage space for certain data types, although it may require additional computation to reconstruct the original data when necessary. This approach is especially useful for data that will be accessed frequently, such as transactional or analytics information. Some solutions can also store petabytes or exabytes, allowing you to access the massive volumes of data you generate and replicate.

Increased Flexibility

With the growing use of renewable energy, electricity systems need more flexibility. Storage technologies are expected to play a major role in this respect. They can provide grid balancing services, support the electrification of buildings and transportation, or serve as backup power for homes, businesses, and communities. They can also help prevent or reduce the risk of blackouts and brownouts. The costs of energy storage systems decrease with duration (storage time). For example, a solar-plus-storage system that provides 60 MW of power will cost less than one, providing the same amount of control over 4 hours since it would have to pay for an equivalent capacity of inverters and other hardware over a shorter period. Storage systems can also be configured to deduce data, automatically transferring the most recently used data to lower-performance tiers and minimizing storage space requirements without downtime or disruption. This makes storage more efficient while delivering high performance, ensuring data availability, and meeting compliance requirements. In addition, they can help avoid overprovisioning storage hardware that is expensive to maintain.

Lower Energy Consumption

In the field of renewables, energy storage technologies are becoming increasingly significant. They can compensate for fluctuations in solar and wind power generation, keep grids balanced and avoid unnecessary energy waste. They can also provide ancillary services such as frequency regulation, spinning reserve and voltage control, helping to enable the smarter grid of the future. While energy storage is not 100% efficient – some energy is lost in storing and retrieving it – it can increase system efficiency, resilience and power quality. It can also accelerate the broader adoption of renewables, helping to achieve sustainable energy goals faster.

For example, when paired with rooftop solar PV, an energy storage system can help lower electricity bills by reducing demand from the grid during peak times, such as when air conditioners are running, and lights are turned on in the evening. It can also help prevent power outages caused by weather events and reduce carbon emissions and energy costs. This is possible because it enables buildings to store energy when it’s clean and cheap, then draw from the stored supply during peak times, when electricity prices and emissions are highest.

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