Researchers at WMG, University of Warwick have formed a new research partnership with battery technology innovators Faradion, and smart energy storage specialists Moixa Technology, to develop sodium-ion cells as a significantly lower cost alternative to lithium-ion batteries for solar energy storage. This collaboration is being part funded by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency.
A significant proportion of the cost of current solar energy storage systems comes from the commonly used lithium-ion battery. However by using highly abundant sodium salts rather than lithium, Sodium-ion cells are anticipated to be 30% cheaper to produce. This makes solar storage more accessible and opening up the possibility of domestic renewable energy storage to a greater number of households and businesses worldwide. Developments in this area could lead to a CO2 reduction of 500,000 tonnes each year.
Another key element to the partnership will be to prove that sodium-ion technology can meet the life cycle requirements of solar energy storage. A conventional lead-acid battery would currently need to be replaced up to five times throughout the lifetime of a photovoltaic (PV) solar system.
WMG’s role in the partnership will see it employ its large scale prototype manufacturing and electrode coating capabilities. Faradion will bring to the partnership its knowledge of sodium-ion battery technology, cell performance, battery markets and licensing. Moixa Technology, will provide its ability to design, build and test photovoltaic energy storage systems and its knowledge of this market.
Rohit Bhagat, Associate Professor at WMG said "We have invested heavily in our Energy Innovation Centre, and are pleased to be part of this project as Sodium-ion batteries offer considerable strategic and technological advantages for solar and grid energy storage applications."
Francis Massin, CEO of Faradion, said: “This partnership with Moixa Technology and WMG, University of Warwick,offers a great opportunity, not just for Faradion, but for global CO2 reduction. Solar energy storage is an important growth market of the next five years and this partnership means that the UK has the opportunity to be at the forefront of technology development.”
Chris Wright, CEO of Moixa Technology, said: “Moixa are excited to be working with Faradion on this project, we believe that energy storage solutions such as Moixa’s Maslow have the potential to transform how the world uses energy, and pulling down the cost of the batteries is key to scaling this vision.”
For further information please contact:
Lisa Barwick, Head of Marketing and Communications,
WMG, University of Warwick
Tel: 024 76 524721 or 07824 540845
Peter Dunn, Director of Press and Policy,
University of Warwick, Tel UK: 024 76523708 office 07767 655860 mobile
Tel Overseas: +44 (0)24 76523708 office +44 (0)7767 655860 mobile/cell
Alex Michaelides – firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: 020 7952 1078
Notes for Editors:
About WMG - WMG is an academic department of the University of Warwick, and one of the world’s leading research and education groups. They are at the forefront of innovative technology, leading major multi-partner projects that create and develop exciting new processes and products which lead to major breakthroughs are of huge benefit to organisations. Their undergraduate and postgraduate education programmes attract students from across the globe who recognise and the value their approach to research and impact driven education.
WMG has a long history of research into hybrid, electric and low carbon vehicles,
and is at the forefront of research, providing guidance and technical know-how in three key areas of Energy Storage; Energy Management; and Complex Electrical Systems.
The Energy Innovation Centre is a centre for world-class innovation for the development of new battery chemistries from concept to fully proven traction batteries, available in sufficient quantities for industrial scale testing. The Centre also includes a battery characterisation laboratory, aggressive testing chambers and an electric/hybrid drives test facility. Through the Centre they work in collaboration with companies, on projects in areas such as powertrain architecture, control optimisation strategies, secondary power source modelling and energy storage technologies.
About Faradion Ltd
Faradion is pioneering the next generation of advanced, low-cost battery materials. These novel materials employ sodium-ion (Na-ion) technology which, when incorporated into batteries, will be virtually indistinguishable in terms of performance from the leading lithium-ion (Li-ion) products currently on the market.
Na-ion batteries have a number of benefits compared to battery technologies already on the market, with the foremost advantage being the low cost. The sodium salts used to prepare these battery materials are highly abundant, coming from more renewable sources than those of equivalent lithium salts, making them both cheap and easily obtainable. If compared to the equivalent salts used to make Li-ion batteries, the cost is approximately 1/10th.
Faradion was virtually the first investment made by Finance Yorkshire and is headquartered in Sheffield’s Innovation Centre. See more at: www.faradion.co.uk
About Moixa Technology -Moixa Technology has a vision to transform how the world uses electricity. Moixa Technology has been developing smart storage and smart DC solutions and enabling technologies since 2008 with the support of over £2.5m of public funding contracts and R&D grants from DECC and InnovateUK. MASLOW is designed as a compact, rapid to install energy storage solution, for powering peak energy demands in homes and small offices, and to support aggregation and storage as a service for grid income, as well as providing local resilience on connected DC LED lighting and electronics. http://www.moixatechnology.com
PR100 PJD 7th March 2016