Solar Market: Vanadium Flow Batteries
Solar Power Costs have surely come down over the past few years-but has a bottle neck- The storage issue- i.e. the cost of batteries. Photo Voltaic Energy is intermittent, and needs to be stored. Bringing down the installed cost of solar power systems is half the challenge. Headway needs to be made in bringing down the cost of batteries for energy storage and other technologies that make solar (and wind, for that matter) cost effective and reliable.
Some advances have been made in battery technology which has resulted in cost reduction. Noteworthy is the invention of Vanadium flow batteries, which have an important lifecycle advantage..
Flow batteries refer to the charge generated as two fluids flow adjacently.. They have a longer life ( no of cycles) and do not degrade over time as do lithium-ion batteries, for example. The said factors make flow batteries ideal storage devices. They can sit idle for long periods without losing their charge, and they can be revved up to speed almost instantly when called into action. Another key advantage is scalability, merely by enlarging the size of the storage tanks for the fluids.
Vanadium has emerged as a preferred base for flow batteries, because instead of two different substance a vanadium flow battery relies only on one: vanadium. That eliminates the cross-contamination issues that typically complicate flow battery design.
As for how one substance can stand in for two, that’s because vanadium can exist in two different states.
Imergy also cites advantages over lithium-ion technology including the flow battery’s hardiness over a wider range of temperatures and its replaceable components, which provide it with an “effectively unlimited” useful life.
ESP30 will be available for sale in the US and India starting in November, so go for it all you early adopters.
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