Monday, May 27, 2024

First utility deployment of a liquid metal battery system

Ambri has collaborated with Xcel Energy for the first utility deployment of a liquid metal battery system.

This collaboration represents the first field-deployed utility pilot system for Ambri, demonstrating its innovative liquid metal battery in a real-world setting. It also marks a major US utility’s initial evaluation and demonstration of this battery.

Minnesota-based Xcel Energy is an industry leader in responsibly reducing carbon emissions and developing and delivering clean energy solutions from various renewable sources. The company provides energy to millions of homes and businesses in eight western and midwestern states.

Ambri is a USA-based Liquid Metal battery technology company changing how power grids operate by increasing the contribution from renewable resources and reducing the need to build traditional power plants.

Liquid metal batteries undergo minimal degradation and last more than 20 years. They are not only highly reliable but also safe. Thermal runaway is impossible as they do not produce or emit any gases.

“Xcel Energy has always been at the forefront among utilities in the transition to carbon-free electricity,” said Justin Tomljanovic, vice president of Corporate Development at Xcel Energy. “This demonstration project with Ambri allows us to explore a technology that could help us continue reliably supplying the energy our customers depend on throughout the clean energy transition.”

Ambri and Xcel Energy will jointly test the 300kWh system at SolarTAC in Aurora, Colorado, for 12 months, allowing for a comprehensive evaluation of its capacity and performance.

Both these companies will test various use cases throughout the demonstration period, including solar and wind integration, capacity management, arbitrage, and ancillary services.

The liquid metal battery system will use the GridNXT microgrid platform on SolarTAC to integrate multiple generation sources, such as solar and wind, with inverters, load banks, and 3-phase distribution connections and communications.

Installation of the system is expected to begin in early 2024, with the system fully operational by the end of that year.

Xcel Energy plans to develop a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for large capacity long-term energy storage projects to follow the upcoming 300kWh system at SolarTAC.