Montréal, June 2, 2014
Establishment of Esstalion Technologies, Inc., a joint venture between Hydro-Québec and Sony
“Esstalion Technologies, Inc.” has been newly established by Hydro-Québec, Canada’s largest electricity producer, and Sony Corporation (“Sony”) as a business venture to research and develop large-scale energy storage systems for power grids.
”Esstalion Technologies, Inc.” will utilize Hydro-Québec’s operation and control technologies for electric power supplies as well as its lithium-ion battery material technology, together with Sony’s control technologies for highly safe, reliable, olivine-type lithium-ion iron phosphate rechargeable batteries and highly scalable module systems. By combining these strengths and performing the activities at a common location, the new company intends to research and develop highly safe and reliable systems for large-scale applications, as well as battery material technology suitable for use within electric power systems, and explore their use in a wide variety of applications, such as meeting excess demand during peak times and integrating renewable energy sources into power grids.
The “Esstalion” portion of the new company’s name (“Esstalion Technologies, Inc.”) is a hybrid term that combines “ESS” (for Energy Storage Systems), “Station” (as a venue for energy management), and “Lithium-ion,” and represents energy storage systems for power grids that use lithium-ion battery technologies, the subject of the joint venture company’s research and development.
Comment from Tomoyuki Suzuki, EVP, Corporate Executive Officer, Device Solutions Business, RDS Platform, Sony Corporation
Representative Director and President, Sony Energy Devices Corporation
Sony’s battery business possesses unique technological capabilities and Sony is committed to grow it, as well as the image sensor business, into a pillar of our device business. The key for the successful growth of Sony’s battery business in the future will be the market for large-scale energy storage systems for power grids and, by using Hydro-Québec’s wealth of knowledge and technological expertise as well as focusing on research development, I believe we will be able to produce results. Furthermore, we will strive to contribute to society and enrich people’s daily lives by building and popularizing an extremely safe and reliable energy infrastructure.
Comment from Thierry Vandal, President and Chief Executive Officer, Hydro-Québec
By combining Hydro-Québec’s know-how in the operation and control of electric power systems as well as our lithium-ion battery material technology, together with Sony’s expertise and leadership in rechargeable batteries and highly scalable module systems, we think we will succeed in developing high-performance energy storage systems for large-scale applications, as well as battery material technology suitable for use in power grids.
Comment from Pierre Arcand, Québec Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Northern Plan
This partnership between a world-renowned company like Sony and Hydro-Québec illustrates Québec’s leadership in the development of high-quality battery materials. Making power systems throughout the world more intelligent and efficient represents a huge challenge, and the development of large-scale energy storage systems is a concrete step towards meeting this challenge.
Esstalion Technologies, Inc. Overview
Date of Incorporation: May 14, 2014 (started as a joint venture on June 2, 2014)
Headquarters: Varennes, Québec, Canada
Representative Director: Élie Saheb (Executive Vice President – Technology, Hydro-Québec )
Description of the Business: Research and development of large-scale energy storage systems for power grids and battery material technology
Hydro-Québec transmits and distributes electricity. It is Canada’s largest electricity producer and one of the world’s leading hydropower producers. Its sole shareholder is the Québec government. It uses mainly renewable generating options, in particular hydropower, and supports the development of other sources of energy, e.g., wind and biomass, through purchases from independent power producers. Its research institute, IREQ, conducts research and development work in energy-related fields, including energy efficiency and energy storage. Hydro-Québec invests $100 million in research every year.
About Sony Corporation
Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and online businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading electronics and entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $72 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013. Sony Global Web Site: http://www.sony.net/
Corporate Communications & CSR Department