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Monday, January 26, 2009

National Grid and Beacon Power (Nasdaq: BCON ),Sign Agreement to Evaluate Flywheel Technology for Grid Applications

National Grid and Beacon Power Sign Agreement to Evaluate Flywheel Technology for Grid Applications

Evaluation to focus on benefits of fast-response regulation and heightened demand for regulation due to wind power

TYNGSBORO, Mass.--Jan 26 2009 --Beacon Power Corporation (Nasdaq: BCON ), a company that designs and develops advanced products and services to support more stable, reliable and efficient electricity grid operation, announced that it has executed an information sharing and performance evaluation agreement with the energy utility company National Grid.

Under the two-year agreement, the companies will share technical, performance and economic data associated with Beacon’s flywheel energy storage systems and their potential operational value to National Grid’s electricity transmission networks. Objectives of the agreement include National Grid’s evaluation of Beacon’s flywheel energy storage systems not only for fast-response frequency regulation, but also for wind-related ramp mitigation – another potential large-scale grid stability application.

“National Grid is committed to assessing new energy technologies and their capacity to help create a more efficient, environmentally responsible and cost-effective modern grid,” said Stan Blazewicz, Vice President, Global Head of Technology for National Grid. “The positive attributes of flywheel energy storage – especially its high efficiency, zero carbon emissions, and extremely fast response – make it a technology of significant interest and one we are keen to investigate.”
“National Grid is one of the largest investor-owned utility companies in the world, with an extensive footprint in the United Kingdom as well as the northeastern U.S.,” said Bill Capp, Beacon Power president and CEO. “Prior to this agreement, we collaborated closely with National Grid in 2006 and 2007 on our demonstration system in Amsterdam, New York, as well as more recently on three interconnection projects in Massachusetts and New York. We believe that additional benefits can come from the broader sharing of information provided by this new agreement.”

Beacon Power and National Grid will focus on the sharing of technical information and performance results for Beacon’s Smart Energy Matrix, the energy storage-based regulation resource that Beacon is now operating under ISO New England’s Alternative Technologies Program. The two companies will also be sharing technical information and analysis of the potential economic and performance benefits of fast-response flywheel regulation and wind-related ramp mitigation, in both the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

Ramp mitigation refers to the ability of regulation and reserve generation units to quickly compensate for a rapid system-wide change in aggregate power output caused by sudden changes in power production. As an intermittent resource, wind power generation often experiences rapid fluctuations in power output. As the amount of wind generation on the grid increases, many grid operators foresee the need to increase total regional ramping capacity to maintain proper energy balance.
Under terms of the agreement, Beacon will work with National Grid to forecast future increases in the demand for regulation capacity resulting from greater deployment of wind power. National Grid will also work with Beacon Power to define an optimal control algorithm for Beacon’s fast-response energy storage technology that would maximize regulation benefits on the grid.
About National Grid
National Grid (LSE: NG - News; NYSE:NGG - News) is an international electricity and gas company and one of the largest investor-owned energy companies in the world.
In the U.S., National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island, and manages the electricity network on Long Island under an agreement with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA). National Grid also owns over 4,000 megawatts of contracted electricity generation that provides power to over one million LIPA customers. It is also the largest distributor of natural gas in the northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island.
National Grid owns the high-voltage electricity transmission network in England and Wales and operates the system across Great Britain. It also owns and operates the high pressure gas transmission system in Britain and its distribution business delivers gas to 11 million homes and businesses. National Grid also has a number of related businesses such as LNG importation and storage, land remediation and metering.
Beacon Power
Beacon Power Corporation designs, develops and is taking steps to commercialize advanced products and services to support stable, reliable and efficient electricity grid operation. The Company’s primary business strategy is to commercialize its patented flywheel energy storage technology to perform frequency regulation services on the grid. Beacon’s Smart Energy Matrix, which is now in production, is a non-polluting, megawatt-level, utility-grade flywheel-based solution to provide sustainable frequency regulation services. Beacon is a publicly traded company with its research, development and manufacturing facility in the U.S. For more information, visit
Safe Harbor Statements under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This Material contained in this press release may include statements that are not historical facts and are considered “forward-looking” statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements reflect Beacon Power Corporation’s current views about future events and financial performances. These “forward-looking” statements are identified by the use of terms and phrases such as “believe,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” and similar expressions identifying forward-looking statements. Investors should not rely on forward-looking statements because they are subject to a variety of risks, uncertainties, and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from Beacon Power Corporation’s expectation. These factors include: a short operating history; a history of losses and anticipated continued losses from operations; a need to raise additional capital combined with a questionable ability to do so, especially in view of the current situation in the financial markets; the complexity and other challenges of arranging project financing and resources for one or more frequency regulation power plants, including uncertainty about whether we will be successful in obtaining DOE loan guarantee support for our New York facility; conditions in target markets, including the fact that some ISOs have been slow to comply with the FERC’s requirement to update market rules to include new technology such as the Company’s; our ability to obtain site interconnection approvals, landlord approvals, or other zoning and construction approvals in a timely manner; limited experience manufacturing commercial products or supplying frequency regulation services on a commercial basis; limited commercial contracts for revenues to date; the dependence of revenues on the achievement of product optimization, manufacturing and commercialization milestones; the uncertainty of the political and economic climate, and the different electrical grid characteristics and requirements of any foreign countries into which we hope to sell or operate, including the uncertainty of enforcing contracts, the different market structures, and the potential substantial fluctuation in currency exchange rates in those countries; dependence on third-party suppliers; intense competition from companies with greater financial resources, especially from companies that are already in the frequency regulation market; possible government regulation that would impede the ability to market products or services or affect market size; possible product liability claims and the negative publicity which could result; any failure to protect intellectual property; retaining key executives and the possible need in the future to hire and retain key executives; the historical volatility of our stock price, as well as the volatility of the stock price of other companies in the energy sector, especially in view of the current situation in the financial markets generally. These factors are elaborated upon and other factors may be disclosed from time to time in Beacon Power Corporation’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Beacon Power expressly does not undertake any duty to update forward-looking statements.

Contact:Beacon Power CorporationJames Spiezio, 978-694-9121spiezio@beaconpower.comorGene Hunt,
Source: Beacon Power Corporation

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