The project aims to produce a low-cost sustainable battery system based on the chemistry of sodium, for grid-scale storage of renewable energy

Project Insights

  • €174,960

    Total Project Costs
  • 3 yr

    Project Duration
  • 2019

    Year Funded

Project Description

As part of the National Development Plan, the Irish Government has targeted that 55% of the energy required for electricity generation in Ireland by 2030 comes from renewable sources. To increase the penetration of renewable energy, one of the key challenges that needs to be addressed is the intermittent nature of wind and solar power which can lead to curtailment in times of peak generation. To overcome this, an integrated electricity system is needed that uses storage to provide more flexibility to the grid. There is a growing realisation that electrochemical systems such as rechargeable batteries can provide a number of high-value opportunities. The mobility and flexibility in performance means that batteries have the potential to be implemented at all levels of the grid, performing a number of different functions such as curtailment reduction at generation level to peak shaving at customer level. Lithium-ion is the current dominant rechargeable battery technology, however its widespread implementation at grid-level is unsustainable due to the limited global reserves of lithium and cobalt, both essential elements in the battery. As such, there is a pressing requirement to move beyond lithium-ion to a more sustainable chemistry. The goal of this project is to develop a low-cost sodium-ion battery consisting of abundant, non-toxic, sustainable electrode materials such as sodium, iron, sulphur and tin. The aim is to produce a sustainable battery chemistry for grid-scale applications with an energy density comparable to the standard lithium-ion technology on the market today, but at a fraction of the cost.

Project Details

Total Project Cost: €174,960

Funding Agency: SEAI

Year Funded: 2019

Lead Organisation: University of Limerick (UL)

Tadhg Kennedy

Lead Researcher