Solar+Storage/Impact of Technology Cost

From Open Energy Information

Impact of Technology Costs on Solar+Storage Economics

Key Questions

  • At what price points does solar+storage become economical?


  • As lithium-ion battery system prices decline, the number of locations and building types in which batteries are economical increases significantly.
  • Even at higher technology costs, solar with storage systems are economical in some building types in Anaheim, San Francisco and New York.
  • Office buildings, hospitals, large hotels, and secondary schools may see cost savings from solar with storage in the near term.
  • All of the 16 building types modeled see cost savings from solar with storage, in more than one location, under the lowest cost point.
  • At lower technology cost points, solar with storage is economical in 10 of the 16 locations modeled.

Cost Point Definitions

Cost Point PV System Installed Cost ($/w) PV O&M Cost ($/kW) Battery Storage System Installed Cost for Power Rating* ($/kW) Battery Storage System Installed Cost for Energy Rating ($/kWh) Battery Storage Replacement Cost ($/kW) Battery Storage Replacement Cost ($/kWh)
High Cost Point $1.37 $8 $1,332 $290 $441 $256
Mid Cost Point $1.11 $8 $1,062 $256 $407 $238
Low Cost Point $0.97 $8 $1,193 $151 $326 $106
Stretch Cost Point $0.90 $8 $787 $106 $276 $97

* Battery storage projects costs vary depending on the power to energy ratio (also referred to as "duration"). The REopt model requires storage project costs to be input as two separate numbers, one for the power rating and another for the energy rating. These two cost variables are considered together in determining the optimal battery system configuration and, hence, the final project cost.


Joyce Mclaren (bio)
Senior Energy Analyst
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Todd Olinsky-Paul
Project Director
Clean Energy Group