Thermal storage developer raises $2.5M after completing 1st full-scale system
- Axiom Exergy announced this week it has raised $2.5 million from a slate of investors who want to back the company's innovative energy storage installations, which target grocery stores and other large cooling loads seeking to lower peak charges, Greentech Media reports.
- Axiom's system uses off-peak power to freeze quantities of salt water, which is then used to cool refrigeration units during on peak demand times. Mid-sized grocery stores are the company's target market.
- Axiom is also involved in Consolidated Edison's large Brooklyn-Queens demand management project in New York, where the company is targeting 1,200 kW of storage to be installed by 2018.
Axiom has found its installations to be an easy sell, boasting this week that its pipeline includes over $5 million in orders. Its newest round of funding comes from investors like the Element 8 Fund, Victory Capital, the MIT Angels, and JB Straubel, the co-founder and CTO of Tesla Motors. The infusion of cash will help the company scale up its thermal battery projects, which the company says can help supermarkets and food distribution centers reduce their peak energy demand by up to 40%.
Central refrigeration accounts for more than 9% of electricity consumption in commercial buildings in the Unuted States, Axiom President and co-founder Amrit Robbins said.
“Energy storage for addressing peak demand needs, load shifting and backup power is critical for this multi-billion-dollar slice of the energy pie," Robbins said in a statement. "We’re very excited to find so many blue-chip supermarket chains and electrical utilities that share our vision of transforming refrigeration systems into flexible, intelligent energy assets.”
The company estimates that a dollar saved on a supermarket’s operating expenses is equivalent to $48 of additional revenue. Supermarket energy usage is three times higher, on a square-foot basis, than other retail stores.
“Energy storage is a key technology that is enabling the ongoing deployment of renewables on the grid,” said JB Straubel, an angel investor and CTO of Tesla Motors. He said Axiom's solution "provides unique distributed energy benefits and delivers immediate value to supermarkets and cold storage facilities.”
The company's solution has caught the attention of Consolidated Edison, which is seeking to defer a $1.2 billion investment in a new substation in its Brooklyn-Queens service area. The utility is linking together thousands of efficiency and distributed resource projects, and included Axiom to execute a commercial refrigeration storage pilot targeting 300 kW in 2017 and 1,200 kW in 2018.
- Greentech Media Axiom Exergy Raises $2.5M for Thermal Energy Storage
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