The choice of energy storage batteries routes is quite diverse, including at least: lead acid (lead carbon battery), lithium-ion batteries (ternary, lithium iron phosphate), supercapacitors, sodium-ion batteries, flow batteries, sodium-sulfur batteries, etc. In the dazzling array of battery technologies, how should energy storage users and integrators make their choices? What principles should be used to design plans and long-term planning? Energy storage batteries must adhere to the principle of safety first, and specific technical routes must be combined with the scenario. The next generation of batteries may be more disruptive and worth looking forward to.
Energy storage batteries should be safe first
Experts point out that, as an emerging industry, energy storage must first stand firm before it can move forward. Without the premise of safety, rushing or rushing forward will cause endless harm to the industry.
Energy storage batteries systems must meet four application requirements: energy transfer, peak regulation, smooth output, and tracking dispatch curve. How to strengthen standards without obstructing development is a problem that needs to be discussed by the entire industry.
Theoretically speaking, lithium iron phosphate is not absolutely safe, but relatively safe. The safety accidents of energy storage power stations seen today often occur under the conditions of missing or lagging warnings, coupled with existing fire-fighting measures that are not configured for fires. They ultimately evolve into serious accidents.
Therefore, in addition to strengthening battery management, energy storage safety issues must also consider some passive safety measures, such as sensors, fire alarm systems, and even advance intervention at the operation and maintenance level, just like solar power plants. Energy storage systems must also remember the principle of “70% rely on design, and 30% rely on operation and maintenance” and put it into action to ensure system safety and controllability.
Customization of energy storage batteries scenarios
How to choose battery technology routes? As costs decline, can energy storage batteries replace pumped storage? These are also issues of concern to the industry.
It cannot be said absolutely which energy storage method is the best, whether it is physical pumped storage, flywheel energy storage, or various electrochemical batteries, they all have their own application scenarios. The scientific method should be to deploy them in the appropriate places according to their characteristics and better play their functions.
From a scenario perspective, the main scenarios for energy storage batteries currently include: power generation on the power supply side, wind and photovoltaic power stations, AGC regulation of thermal power plants; energy storage at the grid side, substations, virtual power plants, peak regulation, auxiliary services (frequency regulation, pressure regulation, black start, rotational standby); user-side light storage power stations, home energy storage, backup power sources, etc. Energy storage batteries do not require high energy density, and for different application scenarios, it will have certain requirements for power density. For example, it needs to have high safety, long life, high energy conversion efficiency, and cycles greater than 3500 times.
Energy storage batteries, looking forward to subversion
It is necessary to completely break away from the design thinking of small batteries, develop subversive large energy storage batteries structure technology, including ultra-thick slurry electrode technology for capacity-type energy storage and ultra-high voltage structure technology for power-type energy storage. On this basis, innovation development of low-cost manufacturing technology, safe life extension repair technology, and green environmental protection recycling technology is necessary to meet the needs of different energy storage application scenarios and support breakthrough development of the energy storage industry.
In the future, the goal of electrochemical energy storage technology is “low cost, long life, high safety, and easy recycling,” which requires disruptive innovation and breakthroughs in technology.