Eos Batteries Supercharge Renewable Energy
energywhiz | On 25, Jul 2013
There are batteries, and there are BATTERIES.
Many have long held that sustainable, renewable energy sources won’t take down carbon-based energy sources until battery technology improves substantially. Many renewable energy sources– notably wind and solar– are intermittent. Solar works when the sun is shining. Wind works when the wind is blowing. We at EnerGeeWhiz believe that those that claim that renewables won’t overtake fossil fuels until battery technology improves and order or two in magnitude are blowing some hot air themselves. There are other solution to broad adoption of renewables. But we do acknowledge that improved battery technology can help with energy efficiencies across the board, whatever the source of energy, so we keep an eye on it.
A recent NY Times article reports that ConEd and other utilities are now testing a new zinc-based technology from Eos Energy Storage.
While for some time there have been some kind of batteries tied into the grid, the deployment has been limited, principally do to prohibitive costs– large scale batteries are super expensive and widespread deployment has been uneconomical.
Eos says it has gotten around that problem. Its battery relies on zinc, a relatively plentiful and cheap element. The company projects that its cost will be $160 a kilowatt-hour, and that it would provide electricity cheaper than a new gas power plant built to help fulfill periods of high demand, Eos executives said. Other battery technologies can range from $400 to about $1,000 a kilowatt-hour.
“They’ve got a cost factor that makes it economically viable to use their batteries,” said Troy DeVries, director of research and development at Con Edison. He added that the batteries did not contain toxic chemicals, making them more appealing for use in a congested city like New York.
EnerGeeWhiz is <ahem> charged up about the potential of the Eos batteries, and news coming from other quarters about improvements in battery technologies.
For you data geeks, Eos’ Proprietary Znyth Technology Has:
- Most cycles ever realized by metal-air battery – 5000+ battery cycles demonstrated to date with no physical degradation
- Overcome historical limitations of zinc-air batteries – Innovations dramatically improve round-trip efficiency, energy density, cycle life, and run time
- Safe, non-toxic, and stable record – Battery operation is both inherently safe and self-healing
- Low cost per kWh – Low cost of materials, architecture, and lean manufacturing methods result in one of the lowest-cost known energy storage technologies
- Environmentally-friendly materials – Zinc is one of the world’s most plentiful and inexpensive metals and is locally available (US, Canada and Australia are three of top five global zinc producers), while battery is designed with recyclable materials