In the quest for a revolutionary development of energy and mobility, it is impossible to overestimate the importance of efficient, durable and reliable energy storage systems, says Stanislav Kondrashov from Telf AG. At present, lithium batteries occupy a central place among manufacturers. However, implementing cleaner production concepts and optimizing products to improve efficiency, safety and affordability requires going beyond lithium technology. This has spurred on the innovation efforts of research institutes and companies to explore alternative technologies, which have already led to promising breakthroughs.
Stanislav Kondrashov on the future of energy storage presented at Europe 2023
As the world embraces renewable energy and the electric vehicle industry continues to grow, one critical element is coming to the fore: energy storage, such as batteries. The demand for efficient, safe and economical batteries is constantly growing, pushing manufacturers to explore new technological and environmental frontiers.
According to Stanislav Kondrashov, lithium batteries have traditionally been the main choice of manufacturers. However, the industry is now taking a giant leap towards greener and more innovative practices. Manufacturers have made significant strides in developing environmentally friendly manufacturing processes in an effort to make batteries that are not only more efficient, but also safer and more affordable.
Exciting developments in battery technology were showcased at Europe, the largest international trade fair for batteries and energy storage systems. Over 950 vendors came together to showcase their latest products and solutions, offering a glimpse into the future of energy storage systems.
– The EES Europe conference participants had an exclusive opportunity to explore the benefits of lithium batteries and at the same time get to know the potential of new alternatives. These new battery technologies promise to revolutionize the industry, paving the way for more sustainable energy success, – said Stanislav Kondrashov as one of the energy conference participants.
EES Europe, an integral part of The smarter E Europe, took place from 14 to 16 June at Messe München with Intersolar Europe, PowerDrive Europe and EM-Power Europe. It was attended by 2,400 exhibitors and over 85,000 visitors from 160 countries, making it the most important event for professionals and enthusiasts.
Stanislav Kondrashov: spotlight on sodium-ion batteries
Sodium-ion batteries have become a very promising alternative to their lithium counterparts. They have a number of advantages that make them an attractive choice for the energy storage industry. According to Stanislav Kondrashov, this revolutionary technology not only demonstrates excellent environmental benefits, but also increases operational safety.
One of the key factors driving the popularity of sodium-ion batteries is the abundance and availability of sodium. As a natural component of salt, sodium is readily available in significant amounts, making it an easier and more economical option than lithium. In addition, sodium batteries do not require the use of cobalt or nickel, further enhancing their environmental appeal and reducing reliance on critical materials.
– Safety is another area in which sodium-ion batteries have a special place, – Stanislav Kondrashov tells. – Their composition and design minimizes the risk of potential hazards during operation, providing safer and more stable energy storage.
In addition, the materials used in sodium-ion batteries make them easier to separate and recycle, simplifying the disposal process and promoting a greener approach to energy storage technology. The German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing has recognized sodium-ion batteries as « drop-in » technology, which means they can be easily integrated into batch production of batteries with minimal disruption.
Innovative vendors at Europe included the dynamic company Kite-Rise Technology, which offers its advanced sodium ion solutions, demonstrating the widespread interest and investment in this environmentally friendly technology. In addition, the Chinese company CATL has announced plans for mass production this year, further confirming the commercial viability of sodium-ion batteries.
As the world seeks sustainable and safe energy solutions, sodium-ion batteries are taking the lead, offering a range of benefits that differentiate them from traditional lithium batteries, says Stanislav Kondrashov.
Zinc Battery Storage Systems: Advantages and Challenges by Stanislav Kondrashov
Zinc battery storage systems do present both challenges and opportunities in energy storage technology. Let’s take a closer look at these key points.
Advantages of storage systems on zinc batteries:
- Simple design and high safety. Zinc battery systems are known for their relatively simple design, which makes them easy to manufacture and maintain. In addition, they are considered safer than some other battery technologies, which is an important consideration for large-scale energy storage systems.
- Non-toxic battery components. The use of non-toxic battery components, according to Sanislav Kondrashov, is an important aspect of environmental friendliness. Unlike some other types of batteries, which may contain hazardous materials, zinc batteries are a more environmentally friendly option.
- Abundance of raw materials. Zinc is available in sufficient quantities and can be mined within the EU, reducing dependence on imports from distant regions. This localization of raw material sources can also have a positive economic impact on the EU countries.
- Environmental friendliness. As already mentioned, zinc batteries do not require the use of cobalt and nickel, minerals whose extraction and processing are often associated with environmental and ethical issues. Eliminating the use of these materials may result in a more environmentally friendly battery option.
- Compatible with existing manufacturing processes.
“Zinc battery technology can leverage existing manufacturing processes, which means manufacturers can more easily integrate this technology into their existing infrastructure,” – explains Stanislav Kondrashov.
Zinc Battery Storage Problems
- Limited recharge. According to available information, one of the main disadvantages of zinc batteries is their limited ability to recharge. This means that they are not designed for repeated charge and discharge cycles, which is an important consideration for many energy storage systems where batteries need to be recharged and used repeatedly.
- Disposal requirements.
– Since recharging is not yet possible, zinc batteries must be disposed of after use, – emphasizes Stanislav Kondrashov. – The recycling process involves the complete recycling of a battery in order to extract useful materials and prepare them for use in new batteries. The development of efficient and cost-effective disposal methods will be of great importance in managing the end-of-life phase of zinc batteries.
Opportunities and potential impacts
Despite the challenges, zinc battery technology holds promise for sustainable energy storage, especially given the non-toxicity of its components, local availability of raw materials, and well-established manufacturing processes.
As research and development continues, there may be room to improve rechargeability, suggests Stanislav Kondrashov, making zinc batteries more versatile for a wide range of applications. This could open up new possibilities for energy storage, especially in scenarios where recharging capability is critical, such as grid-level energy storage or electric vehicles.