NEC Energy Solutions integrates Stem’s AI-driven software to simplify large-scale solar + storage deployment
NEC Energy Solutions, headquartered in Westborough, Mass., is partnering with Stem to simplify solar + storage projects. Through a master supply agreement, Stem will resell and integrate its Athena AI platform with NEC’s GSS end-to-end grid storage solution. The agreement will result in a powerful solar + storage solution for large-scale projects, leveraging NEC’s AEROS proprietary energy storage controls and Stem’s sophisticated Athena AI platform to perform solar and storage optimization, wholesale market participation services, solar charging compliance and reporting, and warranty compliance and administration.
“We expect over $50 billion to be spent on U.S. energy storage projects between now and 2030. Solar + storage is one of the quickest growing and exciting segments,” said Logan Goldie-Scot, head, Energy Storage at BloombergNEF. “The partnership between NEC and Stem offers a new option to developers looking for an experienced and safe storage provider that can also help monetize the assets in an increasingly complex trading environment.”
The addition of NEC products to the Stem portfolio brings a DC-coupled solution to the front-of-meter solar + storage market. With only a single point of interconnection, DC-coupled front-of-meter solutions are typically more efficient for energy production, less expensive to deploy than AC-coupled systems and support cost-effective time shifting of excess solar.
Stem will pair NEC’s offerings with its Athena software, which helps developers address the most complex aspects of solar + storage projects. The collective intelligence of the Athena and AEROS platforms enable users to predict battery operational costs, and layer on market knowledge, forecasting, and participation with known operating constraints such as ITC limitations and SMART program rules. Developers and asset owners will be able to increase the value of their project throughout its lifetime by automating energy trades based on different market scenarios.
“Stem’s decade of expertise coupled with more than 125 MWh booked in the last ten months alone, enables us to advise on the entire storage project lifecycle – from which batteries are best suited for a project and how to configure them, to optimizing them across their lifetime, managing federal and state incentive compliance and maximizing the financial return by participating in energy markets,” said Stem COO Mark Triplett.
The initial pipeline includes joint projects for Kearsarge Energy, a full-service renewable energy project development, finance and holding company based in Boston, which Stem announced in September. Under this agreement, Stem and Kearsage will work on large-scale storage projects co-located with solar, leveraging its sophisticated Athena AI platform, to support optimization, wholesale market services, production of solar charging reports, warranty administration and compliance with the Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) program.