Redox flow battery technology moved closer to gaining traction in the stationary storage market this week as two firms announced major business developments.
US firm Vionx Energy hopes to transform the way grids are managed after entering a partnership with six companies to launch and commercialise the Massachusett-based firm’s batteries.
The relationship brings together United Technologies Corp. (UTC), Starwood Energy Group, Siemens, 3M, VantagePoint Capital Partners and Jabil to license, finance, manufacture and deploy the vanadium redox flow battery.
Back in June VionX, formerly known as Premium Power Corp., raised around $58.2 million in gross proceeds from 11 equity investors.
Elsewhere US firm Energy Storage Systems (ESS) received a cash boost to ramp up production of its 125 kW/1 MWh all-iron redox flow (IFP) battery system next year.
The IFB, developed for retail, industrial and utility-scale applications, can deliver 10,000 cycles with no degradation, and store between six to 12 hours of energy.
The Oregon-based company secured $3.2 million in venture capital funding from Pangaea Ventures in a Series A round of financing.
The funding is in addition to $4.5 million the company secured in development grants for the commercialisation of the IFP.
Pangaea joins ARPA-e, ONAMI and Oregon Best as identified backers of the product.
Flow batteries can deliver a longer duration of storage at a competitive cost-per-kW basis (compared to lithium-ion, the favoured chemistry for energy storage applications). However, they loose out in terms of efficiency, delivering an round trip efficiency ratio of around 70%, compared to lithium’s 90% range.
A report by Cairn Energy Research Advisors predicts the global stationary storage market to increase by around 50% in 2016, and will grow from a global revenue of $6.7 billion this year to $13.2 billion by 2020.