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BEST articles Spring 2020

Wed, 05/27/2020 - 14:40 -- Vic

LIB-LAB form a successful pact in hybrid BESS applications

In the UK’s political arena, LIB-LAB (Liberal and Labour parties) pacts have never worked due to irreconcilable ideologies. Dr Mike McDonagh explores how lithium-ion and lead-acid chemistries perform when combined in a battery energy storage system (BESS) for the charging of electric vehicles (EVs).




Sovema’s Re-Evolution— ready to roll after the pandemic lockdown

BESTmag technical editor, Dr Mike McDonagh, questions Sovema sales and marketing director, Marcello Fantoni and technical and R&D manager, Luciano Ferrarese about the company’s new wide strip casting machine launched this spring. 




Lithium battery second life 

As an increasing number of electric vehicle (EV) batteries are reaching their end of life, and as governments call for more to be placed on the roads, there is a drive to look at repurposing them. Power management innovator Chris Hale looks at the opportunities and challenges for using lithium batteries in second-life applications and uncovers progress and cause for concern in the market.


A technology ahead of its time: the emerging world of flow batteries

For the past ten years, Anthony Price has organised the International Flow Battery Forum, an annual conference to promote interest in, and encourage development and use of, flow batteries. BEST magazine invited Price to discuss flow battery technology and its role in energy storage. 



Optimised formation saves energy

Since 2017 BESTmag’s Technical Editor, Dr Mike McDonagh with UK Powertech and Digatron, has undertaken possibly the most comprehensive global study ever, of modern lead-acid formation methods. In this article, he shows that the results from the latest field trials with five international manufacturers and confirms the early cost savings predicted from the initial laboratory tests in the UK. If you want to substantially increase your bottom line by several hundred thousand USD then you could do a lot worse than start right here.


The true power of lithium-sulfur

Electric vehicle and energy storage system OEM’s are demanding higher energy densities from lighter and safer lithium-ion batteries, but with breakthroughs slowing down, new chemistries stand poised to take up the mantle. Chris Hale visits Oxis Energy to see how the UK-based lithium-sulfur firm is pushing the battery boundaries to reach higher energy densities.



It’s a family affair: The story of Wirtz Manufacturing

There are not many brands in the lead-acid battery industry as renowned and respected as Wirtz Manufacturing. The company, which began in a US depression-era garage, is today a multi-national corporation. With his brothers by his side, John W Wirtz II runs the family business. He spoke to Paul Crompton about the importance of following his own vision for the company while never forgetting its past.



Is solvent recycling of lead-acid batteries a matter of finding the best solution?

For a few years now BESTmag has been reporting on and interviewing start-up companies who have been developing a solvent-based approach to recycling lead-acid batteries,which is cleaner and less energy intensive than pyrometallurgical methods. The latest organisation to take up this challenge is based in Imperial College London's department of materials, as Dr Mike McDonagh reports.


Play it again Steve— How direct recycling can repair battery cathodes

Dr Steve Sloop, CEO of OnTo Technology, describes how direct recycling holds the key to the cost-effective re-purposing of cathodes by unlocking the potential of the original energy and materials used to first fabricate them. By repairing rather than breaking-up the metals used in cathode construction considerable energy and materials, that would otherwise be wasted, can be saved.