Statkraft and Aquabattery to test Long Duration Energy Storage flow battery technology with salt water

Norwegian renewables company Statkraft is joining forces with Dutch climate tech start-up Aquabattery partner to develop a promising technology to improve long-term storage of electricity through a flow battery made with salt water.

Aquabattery has developed a Long Duration Energy Storage (LDES) flow battery technology in which energy can be stored. The flow battery system only requires table salt and water to store renewable electricity for intra- and multiday periods (8hours or up to multiple days or weeks). The flow battery charges with electricity from solar and wind converting the salt into two safe chemical solutions (electrolytes) that can be converted back to salt water when green power is needed again.

Today, large-scale battery energy storage systems typically have duration between one and four hours. LDES will play a pivotal role in creating a sustainable and stable energy system globally and regulating the shifting supply of green energy as more and more countries transition away from fossil sources.

Pilot in Delft

Statkraft and Aquabattery are partnering to develop a pilot to test the technology. The pilot will last six to twelve months and will be deployed in Delft, the Netherlands. The goal is to investigate the scalability of Aquabattery’s technology and its commercial viability.

“We are very excited about this partnership. Aquabattery’s new technology is promising. It has the potential to accelerate and revolutionise the development of long duration energy storage. Without the right mix of energy storage in the system, we risk slowing the pace of wind and solar rollout, and consequently the green transition,” says Statkraft CEO Christian Rynning-Tønnesen.

Alleviate grid congestion

Long Duration Energy Storage can be used for shifting energy from peak to low generation hours and to defer costly grid infrastructure investments. It may also alleviate grid congestion which is a problem in many countries today and hinders wind and solar plants from connecting to the grid.

The partnership was announced at COP28 in Dubai, where both companies were advocating for tripling of total global renewable power capacity by 2030 as crucial to keep the 1.5-degree target alive.

“As the world needs to triple up in renewables, succeeding with long duration energy storage is one of many bits needed in the puzzle to actually make that happen. This technology is also environmentally sustainable, which is a priority for Statkraft,” says Rynning Tønnesen.

Statkraft will provide industrial experience and financial support for the pilot. Statkraft has experience in energy storage from hydropower, short-duration battery storage and hydrogen, which will contribute to the partnership.

“We look forward to working with Aquabattery’s dedicated, innovative and ambitious team. Partnerships are what we need to learn more and to bring new clean technologies to the market,” says Rynning-Tønnesen.

“Partnering with Statkraft is an important step to validate the unique value proposition of Aquabattery and de-risk the route to the solar and wind generation market,” says Jiajun Cen, CEO and co-founder of Aquabattery.

“Being a European climate tech innovator means creating not only a new alternative for Long Duration Energy Storage, but also a better alternative with regards to battery sustainability, safety and supply chain resilience. By using two of the world’s most abundant and cheap materials, table salt and water, Aquabattery is doing just that,” he adds. Source: Statkraft

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