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Columbus, Ohio-headquartered American Electric Power (AEP) plans to add stationary sodium sulfur (NAS) battery technology in its West Virginia and Ohio service territories next year. The company additionally intends to work with wind developers to identify a third location within AEP's 11-state service territory for NAS battery deployment next year, using the storage capability to help offset the intermittent nature of wind generation.

AEP is currently the only U.S. utility using advanced energy storage technology as part of its electricity infrastructure, the company adds. The 6 MW added to AEP's system during this deployment is a step toward the company's goal of having 1,000 MW of advanced storage capacity on its system in the next decade.

The company has ordered the three batteries from NGK Insulators Ltd. of Japan, the technology's manufacturer and codeveloper along with the Tokyo Electric Power Co. AEP anticipates delivery in spring 2008.

"In our view, advanced storage technologies, like NAS batteries, and other emerging technologies to increase customers' ability to benefit from energy efficiency will play equally important roles in delaying or avoiding costly future investments in new energy delivery or generation infrastructure," says Michael G. Morris, chairman, president and CEO of AEP. "I believe other companies will begin deploying storage technologies in the coming years."

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