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Energy Storage: ITN Energy Systems

CASE STUDY

ITN Energy Systems

ITN is developing a vanadium redox flow battery for residential and small-scale commercial energy storage that would be more efficient and affordable than today's best energy storage systems.

In a redox flow battery, chemical reactions occur that allow the battery to absorb or deliver electricity. Unlike conventional batteries, flow batteries use a liquid (also known as an electrolyte) to store energy; the more electrolyte that is used, the longer the battery can operate.

Vanadium electrolyte-based redox flow battery systems are a technology for today's market, but they require expensive ion-exchange membranes. In the past, prices of vanadium have fluctuated, increasing the cost of the electrolyte and posing a major obstacle to more widespread adoption of vanadium redox flow batteries. ITN's design combines a low-cost ion-exchange membrane and a low-cost electrolyte solution to reduce overall system cost, ultimately making a vanadium redox flow battery cost-competitive with more traditional lead-acid batteries.

ITN is currently testing their energy storage system at Group NIRE’s Distributed Asset Research Testing (DART Facility). If successful, ITN's vanadium redox flow battery would provide storage capacity for residential and small-scale commercial applications at a cost approaching $1,000 per unit, compared to the $4,000+ price point of today's systems.

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