Southern Company Launches Energy Storage Center
August 2019
Electric companies continuously invest in and commit to innovation and technological advancements. In July, Southern Company announced the launch of the Energy Storage Research Center, a unique research and development (R&D) facility focused on the development and deployment of energy storage.

The new facility is a resource for the industry to test and develop energy storage technologies needed to better integrate renewables into the energy grid, as well as improve reliability, resiliency, and affordability for customers.

"As an R&D leader, Southern Company continues to advance technologies that can help us better meet customers’ needs in the rapidly evolving energy landscape,” said Southern Company R&D Director Roxann Walsh. “The Energy Storage Research Center will broaden our work with stakeholders and technology developers to better understand energy storage systems and how to fully use this technology to build the future of energy."

The facility also will evaluate a flow battery system developed by Avalon Battery. Flow batteries, which are a type of chemical energy storage technology, can offer a longer life cycle and a quicker response time.

“We will need newer, better, more cost-effective energy storage in a low-carbon future – and R&D efforts like the Energy Storage Research Center will help bring these cutting-edge technologies to full deployment,” said Walsh.

The Energy Storage Research Center is one of several residential-, commercial-, industrial-, and large-scale battery storage R&D projects across the Southern Company system’s Southeastern service territory. Located on the engineering campus of Southern Research in Birmingham, Alabama, the facility is a collaboration among Southern Company, Alabama Power, Southern Research, the Electric Power Research Institute, U.S. Department of Energy, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the state of Alabama.

This is another example of how the electric power industry’s partnership with the government and industry researchers plays a critical role in developing and creating new technologies to provide a clean energy future and to meet customer expectations.

An original version of this story can be found on Southern Company’s Newsroom site​.