Designing batteries that have been operating for more than 20 years, this startup was invested more than $ 30 million by Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos

Tram Ho

More importantly, the chemicals used in ESS’s batteries are environmentally friendly and completely reusable in new battery packs.

The United Nations report on climate change released on November 26 shows that unless the amount of greenhouse gases must be significantly reduced in a short time, otherwise the earth will face rising temperatures. Unusually high and irreversible in the near future. The situation became even more ominous when the World Weather Organization’s report showed that new greenhouse gas emissions hit a new record high in 2018.

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions not only focuses on the expansion of environmentally friendly energy systems, but also comes with systems that store renewable energy sources. That’s why billionaire investors and hedge funds believe these energy storage systems will be a stable investment for an uncertain future ahead.

Thiết kế nên những khối pin hoạt động trong hơn 20 năm, startup này được Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos đầu tư hơn 30 triệu USD - Ảnh 1.

Huge fields of solar cells without the right storage would be useless.

The limitations of Lithium-Ion batteries in energy storage

The US storage market is expected to grow 12 times over the next 5 years. According to a report by Wood Mackenzie Storage Service, the deployment scale will increase from 430 MW in 2019 to over 5 GW (gigawatt) in 2024 with a value of about 5.3 billion USD.

However, to sustainably store many gigawatts of electricity and to take them out and use as needed without significant loss is not a simple matter.

Lithium-Ion batteries, despite being manufactured and widely used around the world, have limits that are difficult to overcome. They lose capacity during charging and discharging and will eventually need to be replaced. In addition, they are not really safe when it can explode or catch fire if there are external damage.

Finding an effective alternative to Lithium-Ion is becoming more difficult as the cost of this battery technology rapidly declines due to recent expansion in production.

Iron electrode batteries: rivals chosen by billionaires to compete with Lithium-Ion batteries

Thiết kế nên những khối pin hoạt động trong hơn 20 năm, startup này được Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos đầu tư hơn 30 triệu USD - Ảnh 2.

But a group of private investors, Breakthrough Energy Ventures (or BEV), led by world billionaires like Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Michael Bloomberg, Richard Branson and Jack Ma, are ready to provide Huge financial leverage for startups to find clean energy storage solutions, with longer storage times to meet the potential market demand.

In contrast to Lithium-Ion batteries, which have the advantage of compact size and high energy density for mobile devices, Iron-Flow batteries have the advantage of very long storage time, much longer life. times (over 20,000 discharges, and the entire system is more than 20 years old), electrolytes and electrodes are environmentally friendly, as well as cheaper.

Thiết kế nên những khối pin hoạt động trong hơn 20 năm, startup này được Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos đầu tư hơn 30 triệu USD - Ảnh 3.

Each ESS battery is about the size of a 40 feet container, with the capacity to store 400 kWh of electricity.

Instead of using a solid electrolyte such as Lithium-Ion battery, Iron-Flow battery uses a liquid electrolyte, similar to conventional acid batteries, and then is pumped throughout the system to perform chemical reactions. learn to produce electricity. Because of its lower energy density, along with applications in non-grid areas, Iron-Flow batteries are often installed in containers for easy transportation to places of interest.

Despite having the same initial cost of deployment as Li-ion batteries, with a long storage time of decades and less toxic, environmentally friendly, Iron-Flow batteries are competing with Lithium-Ion batteries. to be the choice for renewable energy storage systems with capacities up to Gigawatt.

Thiết kế nên những khối pin hoạt động trong hơn 20 năm, startup này được Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos đầu tư hơn 30 triệu USD - Ảnh 4.

The picture shows the ESS battery pack and how to install it inside each container.

However, Iron-Flow batteries are not the only option. Former Tesla employee, Gene Berdichevsky, is currently the CEO of Sila Nanotechnologies, a startup that develops silicon anode battery technology. The startup has raised more than $ 100 million from hedge funds and LG Chem, the partner that makes EV batteries for GM.

It is not necessary to wait until the global thirst for renewable energy explodes, so is the need for such energy storage devices. Even now, for sensitive areas such as hospitals, industrial plants, or disaster-prone areas, large-scale power generation systems are always needed to continue working when electricity is not available. there’s more. Perhaps now is the time for billionaires to start drawing more powerful wallets for such systems.

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Source : Genk