ABB, Nissan to explore a second life for EV batteries: energy storage


By: SGN Staff


Unlike standard car batteries, lithium-ion batteries used to power EVs have a lot of life left in them after they're retired from service in a vehicle. Automation technology group ABB, Nissan North America, 4R Energy and Sumitomo Corporation of America have teamed up to evaluate and test the all-electric Nissan Leaf battery for residential and commercial use as energy storage systems.


Lithium-ion batteries have up to 70% of their capacity remaining after 10 years of service as a car battery. The partners plan to create a Leaf battery storage prototype capable of providing at least 50 kilowatt hours of power, the amount needed to keep the lights on in 15 average homes for two hours.


"The agreement will allow us to evaluate the commercial viability of a grid storage solution and develop a prototype to effective reuse Nissan Leaf batteries," said Bruno Melles, head of ABB's Medium Voltage Power products business.


Ken Srebnick, senior manager for Nissan North America corporate planning, added "It's important to Nissan that we manage the complete lifecycle of the electric vehicle battery pack, even beyond its use in a Nissan car. Innovations in energy storage systems are becoming more viable as the electric grid gets smarter..."


Grid-scale storage is anticipated to be a major component in smart grid, in part to enhance efficiency, reliability and performance and to support integration of intermittent renewable energy sources like wind and solar into the grid.


Project partner 4R Energy is considered a pioneer in creating the business model for the reuse of EV batteries for stationary applications. It was established two years ago as a joint venture between Nissan and Sumitomo Corporation to research and test the "second-life" use of lithium-ion batteries. Partner Sumitomo Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Sumitomo Corporation, is an integrated global trading company with diversified investments in a variety of businesses and industries.


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