|Retired electric vehicle batteries that are repackaged into energy-storage systems are being targeted at industrial consumers who’ve been slower to adopt the technology than utilities or homeowners.
Relectrify, an Australian technology developer, is beginning sales of units that repurpose expired Nissan Motor Co. Leaf batteries to create products capable of storing renewable power at manufacturing facilities, farms or remote mines. The systems can also be used to smooth out peaks in electricity demand at EV charging stations, or by utilities to improve the reliability of complex rural grids.
So-called second-life battery systems harness the remaining lifespan in EV packs, which can typically perform less demanding tasks for another seven to 10 years even after they’re no longer capable of powering cars. Eaton Corp. has installed reused batteries for backup power at sites including Amsterdam’s Johan Cruijff ArenA, while Sumitomo Corp., Renault SA and BYD Co. are among others that have tested a range of applications.
More complex economics and a lack of incentives means battery storage has been slower to take hold in commercial and industrial markets, though the segment is primed for growth, according to BloombergNEF analyst Yiyi Zhou. By 2050, the sector should have a total of 325 gigawatts of storage capacity, compared to a residential storage market with about 185 gigawatts, she said.
Read more: Used electric car batteries are heading to factories, farms