17 Oct Meet the experts – Bromine and electricity storage
“Meet the experts” is a new section in our newsletter that will be recurring in future editions. This time we focus on one of today’s biggest challenges in the ongoing energy transition: effective and sustainabe capture and storage of electrical energy for future use.
Solving the energy storage problem
The number of electronic devices has tripled since 1970, with energy consumption going through the roof, making it practically impossible to imagine a world without electricity. How else would we keep a factory running, charge our smartphones & electrical cars, or even light our offices and houses?
More energy consumption means a higher demand for electricity, also caused by the ever-growing global population. This demand is only partially being met by an increasing energy supply. However, as not all electricity is used right away, such as the case, for example, where wind or solar power is deployed, energy storage becomes a critical need.
Meeting with Elestor
To shed light on one of the solutions to this problem, BSEF traveled to the Netherlands to chat with Wiebrand Kout, Ing. and CTO of Elestor, a Dutch high-tech company operating in the electricity storage industry. They are developing bromine-based technologies that will facilitate the storage of renewable energy on a large scale.
Discover more about it in the video below:
Higher demand for renewable energy
Let’s have a closer look: most of the electricity is currently generated by fossil fuel fired thermal power plants, which are unfortunately not very green . In order to decrease carbon emissions and meet the increasing energy demand, countries are gradually moving away from fossil based power systems and towards eco-friendly systems with increased production and use of renewable energy.
There are cleaner and more prolific methods to generate electricity. The sun and the wind, for example, are readily available. However, because electricity production from wind and solar power is very irregular, the electricity is not always used the moment it is generated and often goes to waste. This calls for a method to store electrical energy efficiently.
Cheaper energy storage
Bromine-based electricity storage technologies for example are an extremely efficient and cost-effective electro-chemical solution. These technologies offer an array of options to successfully manage renewable energy, minimize energy loss, reduce overall energy use & cost and safeguard security of supply.
Elestor is developing this storage technology to use in a new-generation bromine-based redox-flow battery that allow for green, renewable energy to be stored on a large scale.
Elestor storage system, model GEN2
How does a redox flow battery work?
A redox flow battery usually consists of one or two tanks containing two chemical components dissolved in liquids, commonly separated by a membrane.
Energy is created when the two solutions flow from one tank to the other, generating a charge by moving electrons back and forth between the tanks.
The batteries can quickly be recharged by replacing the electrolyte liquid, which is stored outside of the cell.
What are the advantages of bromine-based technologies?
Redox flow batteries based on bromine technologies:
- Can be recharged over 10,000 times
- Have a longer lifetime
- Are highly efficient and very cost-effective
- Release energy continuously up to 10 hours or more at a high rate of discharge
- Have increased storage capacity (high energy density)
- Can be recharged almost instantly
- Decouple power and energy
“We at Elestor are convinced that the bromine flow battery is the enabling technology for a fully decarbonized electricity supply”
– Wiebrand Kout
Visit our website to read BSEF’s opinion on the use of bromine in energy storage solutions or read our other blog post on the advantages of bromine-based flow battery technologies.
What are your thoughts on redox-flow batteries and bromine-based technologies?
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