Energy storage has been around since shortly after man harnessed fire. A pile or stack of wood is stored energy waiting to be used. More recently, for hundreds of years, ice was harvested from ponds and lakes for preserving foods through the summer and shoulder seasons. Electricity eliminated the need for ice harvesting and storage. Coming full circle, a nascent industry is emerging to store the benefits of electricity, consuming it to ‘charge’ storage materials when electricity prices are low and discharge the storage materials when electricity prices are high. The storage materials of choice are phase change materials (PCMs). PCMs have a great capacity to release and absorb heat (refrigeration) at a wide range of temperatures from frozen food warehouses at minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit to occupied room temperatures. These wide-ranging phase change materials offer an enormous opportunity to shift loads in ’grid-interactive, efficient buildings‘ (GIBs) in which PCMs do the same thing as batteries or other storage technologies, but at a small fraction of the cost. These technologies are in the pre-emerging technology phase of market adoption, but Jeff Ihnen believes they will become widely accepted due to their flexibility, cost-effectiveness, simplicity, zero moving parts, longevity, and non-invasiveness. Join us as we explore the potential of PCMs!