Zinc-air flow batteries in the LIFE Zaess project

The current trend at global level in the energy sector is progressing towards distributed generation and renewable energy, fostering an increase in grid efficiency and the avoidance of energy losses during its transmission over long distances. For this, the grid requires solutions such as enhanced capacity by constructing new infrastructures or by extending those already existing and/or the implementation of energy storage solutions. This storage has to provide the grid with greater flexibility so that it can make efficient use of the available energy and facilitate the integration of a larger proportion of renewables.

Within this context, the LIFE ZAESS Project is focusing on the development of zinc-air flow batteries for large-scale grid application. The project has a 40-month duration and a budget of €1.2m funded by the EU’s LIFE Programme (LIFE13 ENV/ES/001159).

The project’s partners are CENER (Spain’s National Renewable Energy Centre) and Técnicas Reunidas, the latter acting as coordinator. Flow batteries are a type of battery in which the electrolyte is stored outside the cells, circulating through them when the charge or discharge takes place. This characteristic permits an independent dimensioning of the power and energy capacities that come from the total available surface of the cells and from the volume of electrolyte stored in the external tanks respectively. Read more…

Gabriel García, Maite Alonso and Raquel Garde
Renewable Energy Grid Integration Department at CENER (National Renewable Energy Centre of Spain)
Miguel Sierra, Belén Amunátegui and Manuel Pérez
Proprietary Technologies Development Division, Técnicas Reunidas

Article published in: FuturENERGY April 2016