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batteries and energy storage

Newcastle research team reveals “trigeneration” off-grid CHP system

Mon, 08/04/2014 - 16:43 -- Laura Varriale
Newcastle University

A consortium led by Newcastle University has developed a small-scale off-grid combined heat and power (CHP) system incorporating an energy storage system (ESS).

The small-scale CHP system, funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), uses waste heat to provide cooling and heat as well as power. A domestic-scale tri-generation system of this type would be rated between 6kW and 9kW electricity.

The ESS is designed to provide dependable electricity and to cope with daily fluctuation demand for electricity without a connection to the grid. “Our solution was to incorporate advanced electrical storage into the system, both batteries and the latest supercapacitors, combined with innovative system control,” said Tony Roskilly, professor at Newcastle University.

To make the system greener and accessible for isolated homes in developing countries, the CHP is run by biofuels. “We developed a system for using the oils obtained from pressing crop seeds, like those from jatropha and croton,” said Roskilly. The crops can grow in harsh environments and do not affect food production, according to the researchers.

The team also included researchers from University of Leeds, University of Ulster and three Chinese universities.

SunPower to install residential PV storage solutions

Tue, 07/01/2014 - 09:15 -- Laura Varriale
PV panels on rooftop

California-based solar manufacturer SunPower has teamed up with homebuilding company KB Home to deliver PV battery storage to residential homes.

The collaboration is part of a pilot programme in which SunPower will install 1.4kW PV systems in selected KB Home communities in California, US. The system combines rooftop solar panels with a battery that stores the energy generated during the day. The system is set to power the house during the night with the stored electricity.

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Jabil to manufacture REDT's flow batteries

Mon, 06/16/2014 - 09:52 -- Laura Varriale
Jabil facility

US based Jabil Circuit and Camco Clean Energy's subsidiary REDT have signed a contract that enables Jabil to manufacture REDT's vanadium redox flow battery.

The agreement allows Jabil to produce the battery on behalf of REDT, which faciliates the battery company to manufacture at large scale and accelerate its market deployment.

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Series strings are history

Fri, 06/06/2014 - 10:07 -- gerry@bestmag.co.uk

You’re only as good as your weakest link and in a series string of batteries, that could be a single cell. The answer of course is parallel string offering redundancy – or a piece of electronics that switches cells into parallel operation when one cell goes down.

And that’s exactly what German-based Automatic Storage Device (ASD) showed at Intersolar this week. They call it Pacadu (parallel automatic charge and discharge unit). ASD has developed a new electronic device that can be installed onto each individual battery cell. The innovation allows any number of cells to be combined in a storage system, irrespective of their size, manufacturer, storage technology or power output. 
“We have succeeded in finding a solution that overcomes the technical problems caused by connecting battery cells in series. This marks a real revolution, not only for energy storage systems but for every single battery used around the world. The parallel connection of battery cells has so many advantages that in four years’ time the practice of connecting cells in series will have become a thing of the past,” explains Wolfram Walter, Managing Director of ASD.

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UniEnergy launches grid-scale flow battery

Mon, 06/02/2014 - 13:00 -- Laura Varriale

Seattle-based energy storage manufacturer UniEnergy Technologies (UET) has launched its grid-scale flow battery system, Uni.System.

The Uni.System vanadium flow battery provides short and long duration buffering capabilities to integrate intermittent resources into the grid. The modular factory-integrated battery consists of five 20 feet standard containers providing 500kW of power for four hours, power up to 600kW and up to 2.2MWh of energy.

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Yuasa Battery launches lithium cell for UPS and industrial market

Fri, 03/07/2014 - 11:17 -- Ruth Williams
The LIM50E cell is designed for use in UPS systems and industrial backup power applications

Yuasa Battery Sales in the UK has launched a range of lithium-ion cells for use in UPS systems and industrial backup power applications.

The LIM50E cells will be suitable for use in installations with a small footprint that require high power density at a nominal voltage of 3.7V with a capacity of 50Ah.

The operating range is between -25°C to 60°C for storage, charge and discharge conditions.

Yuasa Battery intends the LIM50E to be used in UPS and standby power systems in telecoms, datacentres and large energy storage systems used with renewable energy.

Yuasa is well-known in the UPS and industrial backup power industries as a manufacturerer of lead-acid batteries so is well placed to know the demands of these applications.

AFC Energy proclaims fuel cell electrodes breakthrough

Fri, 01/25/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

UK hydrogen fuel cell developer AFC Energy is celebrating after extending the longevity of its electrodes to more than six months of continuous operation.

AFC Energy

Electrodes are the critical components of a fuel cell, which enable the electrochemical reactions to occur between hydrogen and oxygen (from air) to generate electricity, heat and water. Laboratory trials of electrodes are on-going and further field trials of improved electrodes are scheduled to begin early next month.

At six months longevity, these applications have the potential to generate significant revenues for AFC Energy whilst also opening up new commercial opportunities in additional territories such as Germany, where the company is already carrying out long-term longevity trials with Akzo Nobel, one of the world's largest chemicals groups.

Ian Williamson, CEO of AFC Energy, said: "Our progress will surprise and challenge the power generating industry and we have recently filed six new families of patents to secure our rights. We look forward to pushing electrode life towards 12 months and beyond where we believe we will have a product that is economic globally in all target markets."

MAN Diesel launches 35/44G ‘'Otto’' four-stroke gas engine

Thu, 01/24/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

MAN Diesel & Turbo has unveiled the 35/44G four-stroke diesel engine, also known as ‘Otto’, at its facility in Augsburg, Germany.

Otto MAN

The 35/44G is offered in a V-type version with 20 cylinders and an output of 10,600 kWm, (10,200 kWm). Its rated outputs – 530 kW per cylinder for 50 Hz power generation and 510 kW for 60 Hz power generation – give the 35/44G best-in-class power density among gas engines.

The newly-developed ‘Otto’ gas engine has an electrical efficiency of 47.2%, and is available for Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and/or jointly with a MAN steam turbine of the MARC series – in a combined cycle mode reaching high total plant efficiencies with low emissions.

It also features a single-stage turbocharger with variable turbine area (VTA) technology and many innovative technological elements. The spark-ignited unit, which is ideal for combined-cycle and combined-heat and power configuration with waste-heat utilisation, complies with all current emission limits solely by in-engine measures.

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