As major players jostle for market share in large-scale power storage, American Electric Power and Nissan Motor Co. are testing new technology that reuses old electric vehicle batteries to slash costs.

The pilot study in Ohio will road-test technology that could lower system costs by about half and extend the life of lithium-ion batteries by about a third, according to its Australian developer.

The costs of energy storage systems are falling globally on technological improvements, larger manufacturing volumes, increased competition between suppliers and growing expertise in the sector, BloombergNEF said in an October report. That's driving an expansion in investment in projects to store power, with as much as $5 billion worth of deals possible this year for systems paired with renewable energy, according to the forecaster.