How the right insulation solves 3 challenges with battery storage
The drive towards promoting and utilising clean energy and the goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 will mean an increased reliance on battery storage. In a world where we’re not utilising fossil fuels for power, batteries will be vital in powering not just things like battery-operated electric vehicles (BEVs) but also off and on-grid storage.
In the UK alone, it’s estimated that 40GW of battery storage is needed to reach net-zero by 2050. Construction of a gigafactory with a production capacity of 30GWh is in the pipeline to enable the production of lithium-ion batteries predominantly to the automotive sector.
It’s therefore vital that as battery technology and its capabilities accelerate, so does the technology and capabilities around battery insulation. Integrating the right insulation solution can have a massive impact on performance, efficiency and overall battery life.
Here’s how insulation helps with 3 key challenges with battery storage.
Extending useful life
As the industry tries new technologies and new chemicals, it’s vital to understand how these degrade over time. Chemical changes within a battery over time can cause physical changes, and when you’re dealing with a large battery pack with a significant number of cells, a physical change could have a massive knock-on effect. Ensuring that battery packs have a longer useful life is beneficial both economically and environmentally, as less degradation over time means less need for maintenance and replacement, which lowers costs and in turn means fewer batteries need to be produced. The production of lithium-ion batteries has an environmental impact, as the extraction of lithium from the earth can harm surrounding soil and cause air pollution. The less extraction needed, the better it is for the environment.
Our proprietary compression pad technology can be used in battery cells and packs to allow them to “breathe” whilst applying enough pressure to maintain ideal electrical and thermal conditions.
Addressing safety concerns
An unfortunate but no less inevitable risk of high energy density battery packs is thermal runaway. Lithium-ion batteries are particularly vulnerable when exposed to extremely high temperatures, as they can create an irreversible and unstoppable chain reaction within the battery pack, which is obviously a huge safety concern as well as a consideration when it comes to keeping things like power outages to a minimum. Introducing effective high-temperature insulation can help to delay the process of thermal runaway.
Increasing battery density
By addressing key challenges, insulation solutions enable battery manufacturers to explore using higher density packs without concerns around safety and efficiency. Higher density packs mean more energy storage capacity, which would make battery storage an increasingly more viable option for on and off-grid storage, as well as improving the performance and range of electric vehicles.
Elmelin are supporting key players in the battery industry by providing dielectric as well as thermal insulation which allows manufacturers to push the boundaries when it comes to improving the capabilities of battery technology. If you’d like to find out more about our battery storage insulation solutions, get in touch.