Colorado-based Ice Energy today announced an infusion of Series C financing in the form of $24 million, according to a press release. The company will use this money to support the deployment of utility-scale distributed energy storage products and a 53-megawatt project in California. Ice Energy also wants to explore new products and expand to a wider set of customers.
So what does Ice Energy do?
The company makes a specialized thermal energy storage product that capitalizes on the arbitrage of on- and off-peak energy rates. Specifically, the technology shifts as much as 40% of peak energy demand to off-peak hours by creating and storing energy at night while energy is cheaper.
Ice Bear, the companyâ€™s main product, works in connection with existing air conditioning units â€“ compatible with about 85% of commercial units. It has two modes: ice cooling and charging. During the night, the energy storage system charges by freezing water attached to a cluster of coils.
During peak hours in the day, Ice Bear takes over for exhausted ac units. A small pump transfers cooled refrigerant to the ac unit, while heat from the ac unit goes to the Ice Bear to thaw the frozen coils. This video explains the process.
So far Ice Energy has tested its technology in data centers, restaurants, convenience and Big Box stores, libraries, fire stations, schools, manufacturing facilities, an airport, and a movie studio. These have been in places like Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, Hawaii, and Tennessee.
In other words, Ice Energy is focusing on non-residential applications for the time being. The company has tested a residential solution and even makes one, the Ice Bear 30, according to Green Building Advisor, but availability is limited.
Credits: Ice Energy.