Innovative Teesside company puts more energy into battery storage

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A Teesside company is powering up its involvement in the battery storage market after announcing a new deal to install a pioneering system helping customers to cut their electricity bills.

UCS Technologies, based at Riverside Park in Middlesbrough, is making the move after gaining certified installer status for the Tesla Powerwall 2 system.

The system makes the most of energy generated by rooftop solar panels by minimising the amount of electricity homes and business premises need to draw from the national grid.

Excess electricity generated by the panels during the day is captured and stored by the system, so it can be used during evenings, or on days with poorer weather.

As well as buildings becoming more selfsustainable and saving energy costs, surplus power can also be used to fuel electric vehicles.

Paul Kidd, director of UCS Technologies, said: “The world is changing, and we are changing with it.”

UCS Technologies was approached to become a certified installer of the system because of its trusted reputation, earned over nearly 20 years.

The company, which specialises in designing and delivering infrastructure for the renewable energy industry, was launched in 2002 by Paul and colleague Simon Close, after building up a wealth of experience in the sector.

The Teesside business has grown steadily since then, with a £3m turnover in 2015-16 set to rise to £4m for the current financial year, despite the global challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

Paul added: “The ethos of the business is to do an exceptional job every time, and that pride in what we do is why we are one of the best performers in the sector.”

UCS Technologies first became involved in the battery storage market a year ago, when the technology started to become commercially viable for domestic users.

“We have reached the point now where someone with battery storage can be 70-80 per cent off-grid, and that will continue to grow,” said Paul.

“A consequence of the coronavirus pandemic will be an increasing number of people wanting to explore ways to become more self-sufficient, because it has created a growing sense of insecurity.”

In addition to the booming residential market, one of the main reasons UCS Technologies was approached to become a certified installer of Tesla Powerwall 2 is that it also works in the business-to-business sector, dealing with companies that can sell the system to mass market clients.

For example, Paul sees social housing becoming “a bigger and bigger player” in the battery storage market because of its potential to have a huge impact on fuel poverty.

Recent projects that UCS Technologies has been working on include the Gateshead Innovation Village, an experimental scheme examining the future of housebuilding.

Now, the Middlesbrough company is actively engaged in acquiring customers for the Tesla Powerwall 2, and Paul says early orders are “very encouraging”.

The first installation – described as a “turnkey solution for sustainable living” – will take place on a house in Yarm within the next month, incorporating solar energy, EV charger, and Tesla Powerwall 2.

“These are exciting times because it is a whole new approach, and UCS Technologies is looking forward to being at the heart of it,” said Paul.