New research shows that when a power system combines energy storage and solar power generation, the end result is greater than the sum of its parts in terms of its ability to handle peak energy demand.

That’s encouraging news for renewable energy.

“Electric utilities are tasked with ensuring they can reliably meet consumer energy demands,” says study coauthor Joseph DeCarolis, a professor of civil, construction, and environmental engineering at North Carolina State University. “Quantifying the reliability benefits of different generation sources informs where investments will be made.”

A power source’s reliability benefit is how much power a given source can be relied on to produce during times of peak demand.

“Our work here suggests that solar power can offer greater benefits to reliability than sustainable energy skeptics suggest,” says corresponding author Jeremiah Johnson, an associate professor of civil, construction, and environmental engineering.

Read the full article about solar power and energy storage by Matt Shipman at Futurity.