Giant Flow Batteries Could Power Your City In The Future

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China is building vanadium redox flow batteries to power its cities in the future, but what exactly are they and how do they work?
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"“One of the major problems with lithium-ion batteries is that lithium is not an abundant material, so it’s just not sustainable” says Sri Narayan, professor of chemistry at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and a scientific co-director at the USC Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute. “In fact, if you look into the distant future, we could run out of lithium if we continue to consume it at the present rate. We need alternative materials that pack more energy in the same volume without much lithium.”"
China starts building world's largest vanadium flow battery

"An energy storage station backed by a 200MW/800MWh vanadium flow battery is in production in Dalian, China, as part of the government's effort to scale up its energy storage capacity. Rongke Power, a local battery maker, is developing the battery after the China National Energy Administration approved the project in 2016 to provide power during peak demand hours. The battery is expected to slice off about 8% of the Liaoning Province port city's expected load once it comes online in 2020, according to Electrek. "
Flow Battery

"Flow batteries have emerged as prime candidates in the development of large-scale grid-connected energy storage systems because they offer very long cycle life, high energy efficiencies, as well as low costs for applications requiring high energy to power ratios. A number of different flow battery technologies have been under development over the past 30 years, but of these, only the vanadium redox flow battery that was pioneered at the University of New South Wales, Australia, and the zinc–bromine battery first developed by Exxon are currently under consideration for large-scale grid integration."
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