Economic Analysis Case Studies of Battery Energy Storage with SAM

Nicholas DiOrio, Steven Janzou, Aron Dobos

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Interest in energy storage has continued to increase as states like California have introduced mandates and subsidies to spur adoption. This energy storage includes customer sited behind-the-meter storage coupled with photovoltaics (PV). This paper presents case study results from California and Tennessee, which were performed to assess the economic benefit of customer-installed systems. Different dispatch strategies, including manual scheduling and automated peak-shaving were explored to determine ideal ways to use the storage system to increase the system value and mitigate demand charges. Incentives, complex electric tariffs, and site specific load and PV data were used to perform detailed analysis. The analysis was performed using the free, publically available System Advisor Model (SAM) tool. We find that installation of photovoltaics with a lithium-ion battery system priced at $300/kWh in Los Angeles under a high demand charge utility rate structure and dispatched using perfect day-ahead forecasting yields a positive net-present value, while all other scenarios cost the customer more than the savings accrued.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages22
StatePublished - 2015

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A20-64987


  • battery
  • economic analysis
  • SAM


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