GE Energy Storage Technologies, a unit of GE Transportation, introduced its Durathon sodium-metal halide battery (earlier post) for critical backup power. The battery can be used in uninterruptible power supply (UPS) applications for large data centers, hospitals, and other areas where a continuous supply of power is necessary.
|Sodium-metal halide cell basic chemistry. Click to enlarge.|
GE has also introduced Durathon batteries for applications in the telecom and utility industries. GE is also using the technology to develop advanced transportation energy storage systems.
Because of its proprietary chemistry, the Durathon battery has the ability to provide back-up service for up to two decades. The battery has a high energy density that, along with its ability to replace current technology, minimizes installation costs. GE’s Durathon battery cells are fully recyclable.
GE’s new battery plant will be located in Schenectady, New York, and is expected to create 350 new jobs in the region. The facility has the advantage of being in close proximity to GE Global Research in Niskayuna, where researchers will continue to enhance the battery chemistry and related systems technologies. GE is making a $150 million investment to build upon the Durathon battery technology through the development of new materials, new manufacturing technologies and intelligent controls.
Durathon technology uses a patented sodium halide chemistry. Sodium battery technology has been in existence for more than 30 years, but GE’s acquisition of Beta R&D in 2007 jump-started applications for mobile and stationary energy storage.
The cathode structure of a sodium-metal halide cell consists of a conductive Ni network, molten salt electrolyte, metal current collector, carbon felt electrolyte reservoir, and the active sodium-metal halide salts.