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decarbonisation

BCI and CBI release report to guide the US’ lead battery development

Thu, 07/15/2021 - 15:12 -- Paul Crompton

Two lead battery organisations have prepared a joint roadmap that identifies 13 key areas for the advancement of the next generation lead batteries.

Trade association Battery Council International (BCI) and research organisation Consortium for Battery Innovation’s (CBI) report positions lead batteries at the heart of the US’ decarbonisation goals.

The ‘Lead Battery Grand Challenge’ roadmap was authored in response to the calls from the US Department of Energy (DOE) for greater levels of advanced energy storage, including batteries.

The roadmap highlights the opportunities for the US lead battery industry, in particular how to secure future opportunities for research and funding as well as targets for increasing the performance of lead batteries. Read the full report here 

Those targets include: increasing cycle life by 1,000 (at 80% and 100% depth of discharge), round trip efficiency (82% to 88%), acquisition costs (from $135/kWh to $35) and operating costs ($0.09/kWh/cycle down to $0.025).

The industry’s goal is to innovate and improve lead battery performance for key markets, such as residential and commercial demand reduction and load response for solar generation.

Lead battery energy storage solutions have intrinsic safety measures, are highly sustainable, manufactured domestically and meet the technoeconomic needs of the US utility sector for decarbonisation and distribution of the US grid. 

Roger Miksad, executive vice president of BCI, said: “This roadmap identifies key research areas which offer opportunities for the next generation of advanced lead batteries to deliver significant performance gains and to play an even greater role in the diverse energy mix that will power the nation’s grid. 

“It’s a call to arms for lead battery manufacturers, DOE, and the national laboratories to partner on collaborative research that takes science from the laboratory to the marketplace.”

Dr. Matt Raiford, senior technical manager, CBI, an author of the roadmap said: “DOE’s renewed focus on energy storage R&D represents a unique opportunity for demonstrable gains in the U.S. battery industry. 

“A high-performing and sustainable energy storage solution is key, and this is possible through a collaboration between the US lead battery industry and the scientific excellence of the DOE.” 

The roadmap’s thirteen research work areas identified to aid DOE in meeting the challenge include: 

  1. Lead industry support 
  2. Lead Battery Science Research Program 
  3. Additive modelling 
  4. Bipolar innovation 
  5. Manufacturing 
  6. Technoeconomic analysis 
  7. Pilot manufacturing 
  8. Supply Chain issues 
  9. Logistics 
  10. Balance of plant optimisation 
  11. Energy storage system demonstration 
  12. Operational Issues 
  13. Recycling 

Energy grand challenge

The report follows the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) issue of its Energy Storage Grand Challenge (ESGC) program last December to accelerate the development, commercialisation, and use of next-generation energy storage technologies in the US.

Last September, BCI lobbied the U.S. DOE to recognise the benefits of lead batteries and invest in the technology to the same degree it does lithium-ion.

BCI sent comments reiterating that lead-based batteries could meet the three objectives of its ESGC roadmap: innovate here; make here; and deploy everywhere.

In February, president Biden issued an executive order to ensure resilient and diverse supply chains that put the spotlight on the need for the US to assert global leadership with home-grown technology to assist in the transition to an electric and low carbon future. 

The ESGC roadmap includes the goal of developing and domestically manufacturing energy storage technologies that can meet all US market demands by 2030.

Its six use cases identify energy storage applications, benefits, and functional requirements for 2030 and beyond.

The ESGC has identified cost and performance targets, which include:

  • $0.05/kWh levelised cost of storage for long-duration stationary applications, a 90% reduction from 2020 baseline costs by 2030. Achieving this levelised cost target would facilitate commercial viability for storage across a wide range of uses including: meeting load during periods of peak demand, grid preparation for fast charging of electric vehicles and applications to ensure reliability of critical services.
  • Other emerging applications for stationary storage include serving remote communities, increasing facility flexibility, increasing the resilience of interdependent networks, and facilitating the transformation of the power system.
  • $80/kWh manufactured cost for a battery pack by 2030 for a 300-mile range electric vehicle, a 44% reduction from the current cost of $143 per rated kWh. Achieving this cost target would lead to cost competitive electric vehicles and could benefit the production, performance, and safety of batteries for stationary applications. 

You can read the full ESGC report here

The U.S. lead battery industry has an annual economic impact of $26.3 billion across 38 states.

Lead batteries provide 60% of the global rechargeable energy storage market, and have significant potential for even better performance to serve increasingly demanding requirements for vehicle electrification and the integration of renewable power to the electric grid. 

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