According to Ice Energy, the company has completed the first phase of what will be the largest installation of its Ice Bear systems in the U.S. The project is under a 21.6-megawatt (MW) energy storage contract with Southern California Edison (SCE). 

Approximately 100 Ice Bear systems, including the newly available Ice Bear 40 model, have been installed at businesses across SCE’s territory. The two-year deployment project will ultimately see more than 1,200 Ice Bears put into operation, which will aim to provide the utility with greater flexibility to reduce electricity load during peak demand periods.

Ice Energy’s contract with SCE enables qualifying Southern California businesses to receive free, fully installed Ice Bears. The Ice Bear lowers electricity costs for businesses, while providing a solution to the problem of peak load management by connecting to one or more standard 5-20 ton rooftop commercial AC units and serving as a thermal battery. Ice Bears use standard tap water that is frozen at night when demand for power is low and electricity is abundant. The stored ice is then used during the high-demand period of the day to provide cooling, using a fraction of the energy required to operate a traditional HVAC system.

“This initial phase of Ice Bear deployments was a smooth and efficient operation, from site selection to turnkey installation to commissioning,” said Marcel Christians, co-COO of Ice Energy. “With Ice Bear production now fully ramped up and installation teams in place, we expect the remaining systems under this agreement to be in place as planned. We look forward to demonstrating how our market-leading thermal storage solution can help ensure grid stability and flexibility, and deliver economic benefits to our customers.” 

In addition to providing free Ice Bear systems, Ice Energy hosts events to educate local business owners, property management firms, and HVAC professionals on the benefits of energy storage and ways to significantly reduce HVAC-related operational and capital expenditures. To learn more about Ice Bear opportunities, or to explore qualifying for a free system installation, contact Ice Energy at

This large-scale storage project is supported through a sales agreement with Argo Infrastructure Partners LLC that was announced in June 2018. The strategic partnership calls for Argo to pay Ice Energy up to $40 million over a two-and-a-half-year period, with a separate $20-million operating contract to extend over a 20-year period.