Germany’s Largest Solar Event Highlights E-Mobility and Storage Boom

Renewable energies represent the future and there’s no stopping them. That was the key takeaway from Europe’s largest trade fair, The Smarter E Europe, which took place last week in Munich, Germany.

The well-attended event offered yet more evidence that the global renewables industry is making significant progress in all areas. A major focus of The Smarter E Europe was the advent of innovative storage systems and the increased efficiency of battery systems, both of which are indispensable for e-mobility.

But by far the most pressing question of all remains how to best to link the various areas of renewables and e-mobility.

Storage is soaring

The storage market is booming. According to analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the annual number of installations worldwide will double six times by 2030, which ultimately means a total storage volume of 125 gigawatts (GW) or 305 gigawatt-hours.

In Germany, home storage is popular, in addition to storage for commercial and industrial applications. Last year alone, according to the German Solar Industry Association (GSIA), BSW-Solar installed more than 30,000 new solar storage tanks in the country. Germany’s market volume for home systems has tripled in the last three years, GSIA said.

“The trends are towards larger storage systems, especially in the home storage segment; the demand for larger systems is increasing because end-consumers will increasingly have larger consumer goods in their households,” said Daniel Hannemann, managing director of Tesvolt.

“In the future, consumers will install electric vehicles and electric heaters such as geothermal heat pumps and air heat pumps. This increases electricity demand both during the day and at night,” added Hannemann.

E-mobility ready for take off

If e-mobility is to make a significant breakthrough, experts believe that charging speeds must be increased. Many manufacturers are therefore working on innovative solutions for charging with high outputs of up to 350 kilowatts, known as High Power Charging.

During Power2Drive Europe, the e-mobility mini-conference hosted at The Smarter E Europe, the high-tech vendors displayed the full range of components needed for a broad e-mobility transistion. Tellingly, the stands displayed not only e-cars, but also electric excursion boats, ferries and yachts, buses and the world’s first e-aircraft and e-helicopters.

As the event demonstrated, the market for electric transport is huge and growing by the day.

The Technical University of Munich (TUM) forecasts around eight million electric vehicles (EVs) by 2030 in Germany alone. The current number of EVs on Germany’s roads is around 130,000, but for this figure to be ramped up, the country needs to add far more charging points and quick charging stations, TUM said.

“By 2030 there will be around 4.7 million charging points in Germany, including 200,000 quick charging stations and 2.5 million in private locations. By comparison, 4,730 public stations were available in September 2017,” the university said.

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