Researchers at the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences report that a 2 kW vanadium redox flow battery under development there for grid storage has been in operation for 1,429 days as of 4 June, with a total running time of more than 34,000 hours and 10,000 charge/discharge cycles.
This is the second vanadium flow system to attain the 10,000 charge/discharge mark, the first one being done by Sumitomo Electric in Japan, DICP said.
The DICP team led by Hua Min Zhang began work in 2000. To speed up the development of flow energy storage battery technology, the research team and the Industrial Investment Co., Ltd. set up Dalian Raycom Energy Storage Technology Development Co., Ltd. in October 2008, specializing in fluid engineering and industrial storage batteries. In 2010 they developed the first set of 260 kW vanadium redox flow battery energy storage systems for wind power, laying the foundation for the development of MW-class flow battery energy storage systems.
A redox flow battery (RFB) stores electrical energy typically in two soluble redox couples contained in external electrolyte tanks sized in accordance with application requirements. Liquid electrolytes are pumped from storage tanks to flow-through electrodes where chemical energy is converted to electrical energy (discharge) or vice versa (charge). The electrolytes flowing through the cathode and anode are often different and are referred to as anolyte and catholyte, respectively.