Renewable energy systems, such as solar and wind, frequently experience changes in power generation due to diminished wind speed or sun irradiation. This issue is effectively addressed by the use of Energy Storage Technologies (EST), which aid in the provision of power to consumers and various scenarios. Varied types of energy systems have different features that vary depending on the scale at which the system is installed, which can range from one kW to one MW, and the time for which the power is delivered to the user.
The basic principle of the battery is based on the conversion of chemical energy into electrical energy by carrying out oxidation and reduction reactions. Such reactions are based on the formation or requirement of an electron by carrying out a chemical reaction. Therefore, the truth meant categories of batteries are primary batteries and secondary batteries. In primary batteries, a one-way reactional procedure takes place by carrying out the conversion of chemical energy into electrical energy. The process is irreversible, and the electrical energy cannot be converted back into chemical energy. Such batteries are considered to be non-chargeable batteries. An example of such a battery is a common cell that is used in flashlights and other small equipment, such as television remotes. Another category is the secondary battery, which carries out the conversion of chemical energy into two electrical energy and vice versa. This allows the batteries to be charged and discharged. Examples of such batteries are lead-acid batteries, nickel-metal hydride batteries, and lithium-ion batteries Some of the features provided by the EST to the consumer, depending upon the scale are provided in the table below.
Table – EST and their Applications
|Applications||Duration of storage (hours)||The scale of the system (Wattage)|
|Power delivery to the consumer||1h-10h||Small (Less than 1MW)|
|Peak shaving, time-shifting, & generation||1h-10h||Large (More than 300MW)|
|Deferral of transmission and distribution||5h-12h||Large (more than 300MW)|
|Capacity firming||Hrs-days||Large (more than 300MW)|
|Load leveling||Hrs-days||Large (more than 300MW)|
|Unit commitment||Hrs-days||Large (more than 300MW)|
The comparative analysis of ESS technology is shown in the figure below. The figure shows five distinct types of storage technologies, i.e., electrical storage technologies, electrochemical storage technologies, thermal storage technologies, mechanical storage technologies, and hydrogen storage technologies. For different types of technologies, the three main characteristics are analyzed, which are reserves and response services, transmission and distribution support, and bulk power management. In the case of battery storage systems (BSS), it can be observed that the BSS systems contribute to reserve and response services, and transmission and distribution support from seconds to hours, but have a reduced capability of managing the power at the bulk level. The redox flow batteries have the capability of supporting the transmission and distribution system, which may range from kilowatts to megawatts. In order to analyze the behavior of the BSS, the basic characteristics and types of the batteries are discussed in the below sections.
Figure: Different Energy Storage Systems (ESS) and Sizes
When it comes to installation purposes, the requirements of the battery systems are as follows:
After the installation of solar PV systems and wind energy systems on a residential, commercial, and industrial scale, the demand for energy storage solutions has increased. According to OEC data, batteries are the 38th most traded component, worth billions of dollars. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the rapid growth of energy storage systems, primarily batteries, is due to the hourly variation of solar and wind power generation. The world’s attention has shifted to battery energy storage systems (BESS) to address the challenges of grid reinforcement, demand response, and meeting residential energy demand. This allows consumers to meet their energy demands at home without any further dependence on fossil fuels. The historical data has been shown in the figure below, which illustrates that in 2021 the total installations on an annual basis of batteries will have increased to more than 6.5 GW, for which the major role has been played by the developed countries, including China, United States, Europe, South Korea, Japan, and the rest of the world.
Figure: Annual Additions of Batteries at Grid Scale from 2015 to 2016 (Source: IEA)
This article focuses on the top 10 battery storage companies that have not only provided batteries at a grid scale, but also contributed to the business of the battery energy storage market.
Figure: Illustration of battery charging levels (Source: Free Pik)
In 2022, Toshiba Corporation will offer an innovative product, the 20 Ah-HPSCiB battery, which will be available in different ratings and sizes of 5 kWh, 10 kWh, 15 kWh, and 20 kWh. The batteries are connected to an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) as well as DC load applications. The excellent features of the battery (Source: TOSHIBA Official Website) are:
|1. Excellent Suppression of Heat: Delivery of 1.7 times the higher input and 1.6 times the higher output, with realization of approximately 40% of the reduction of resistance in the cell.
2. Long Life of the Battery: The test conditions of the battery show that it has 20,000 charging and discharging cycles with 100% maintenance while considering that the performance of the cell can reduce by up to 10%.
3. Applications: The batteries have applications in storage systems at residential and commercial scales, and in the installation of electric vehicles.
4. Rapid Charging: Gets charged within 6 minutes, up to 80%.
Elon Musk is the founder of Tesla, one of the world’s most well-known brands. The company has produced multiple models of Powerwall, such as Powerwall and Powerwall 2. The company’s main focus is to provide backup energy storage to consumers while also ensuring outage protection and energy independence for them. It is an integrated battery system that stores the solar energy for backup protection and provides power in case of load shedding or grid breakdown. The system detects the outage and recharges the battery, balancing the solar irradiance to keep the appliances running for not just hours but days.
The features of Powerwall 2 battery have been provided below:
|Provides minimum loss on usable energy which is 13.5 kWh out of total energy, which is 14 kWh.|
|Real Power at peak 7 kW and real power at maximum continuous scenario is 5 kW.|
|Round Trip Efficiency of the battery is 90%.|
|Operating Temperature is -20℃ to +50℃.|
|Warranty: provided by the TESLA is 10 YEARS.|
|Power Factor: Output Range is 1.0.
Internal Battery DC Voltage is 50V.
This battery has been manufactured by Bay Energy (BE) and contains the most popular material, lithium ferrous phosphate (LiFePO4). The company has been established and is working in Guangdong, China. The main features of the battery are:
|Outsourcing: The battery has been designed and sold to developed countries including United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Singapore.
Certifications: The company has obtained certifications for excellent lithium energy storage systems, including IEC 62916, UN 38.3, and UL 1642.
Application: The battery has been manufactured by OEM and has been matched with well-known inverters such as Growatt, Goodwe, and Deye.
Life cycle: The battery provides competitive life cycles of 6,000 cycles in total and has a nominal capacity of 200 Ah with a good voltage range of 51.2 volts.
Lead time: The lead time of the battery in terms of days begins at 30 days with a quantity of 1 to 10 pieces and it increases up to 45 days when the quantities increase to 51 to 100.
Energy: The battery has a high energy rating of 10kW to compete with other companies.
Huawei has a great reputation in communication and cellular technology, but it has also been progressing as a global powerhouse, especially when it comes to solar power. With the experience of the residential solar market since 2018, the company has been developing different products and equipment, such as lightweight hybrid solar inverters, solar batteries, and other inventory. The Huawei Luna 2000 battery has been developed to provide an in-house energy storage system which will be compatible with single-phase and three-phase hybrid inverters. The battery has been comprised of multiple stacks to form a 5 kWh module that has an operating voltage and independent functionality when compared with high voltage battery systems that work in series. According to the claims of the company, the durability and lifespan of each module get self-managed and have nothing to do with the performance of other modules if temperature variations occur or additional capacity is added at a later date. According to that claim, the consumer can add multiple modules at different times, even after 10 years, and each module will be operating at its full capacity. The key features of the battery are provided in the table below.
|Size: The battery is available in different ratings of 5 kWh, 10 kWh, and 15 kWh.
Safety and Stability: The battery is made up of lithium iron phosphate material, which is considered to be the safest and most stable chemical among other materials.
Perfect and slim design: The battery has been available with a very small footprint and the top section is equipped with battery management unit which interconnect with an inverter.
Battery power output: The minimum size of the batteries is 5 kWh, limiting the output power to 2.5 kW, and another battery model increases this power to 5 kW, having a peak output of seven kilowatts for up to 10 seconds. There is no need to get extra power, and a 5 kW initial continuous supply is enough for houses.
Warranty: The company provides a 10-year warranty with an EOL of 16% for a 5 kWh battery.
Sonnen, founded in 2010, has proven to be one of the leading battery system manufacturers in Germany, having the largest residential battery manufacturing company located in Europe. Because of its low cost and competitive advantage, the company, also known as SonnenBatteie, has surpassed Tesla and LG Chem in recent years.
The Sonnen Eco battery, just like the Tesla Powerwall 2, is supported by an inverter and contains a battery module of 2.5 kWh, which is linked to increase the capacity from 5 kWh to that of 15 kWh. The features of the battery are discussed below.
Warranty: The company gives a warranty of 10 years, provided by 10,000 life cycles.
Intelligence: Automatic increment of the energy consumption during period of high power generation, intelligent and predictive charging system, optimal usage of energy in accordance with data and weather.
Ready to Connect: Everything is included in the battery, which makes it a plug-and-play system.
Manufacturer of cells: The lithium ferro phosphate (LFP) cells are manufactured by Sony.
BYD Battery’s low-voltage storage (LVS) system is basically lithium iron phosphate, which can be used with single phase or three phase inverters. The compatibility of the battery is found with multiple inverters, multi grid systems, and residential or commercial applications. The single set of the battery contains one to six modules, which are connected in parallel to increase the usable capacity in a single tower from 4 kWh to 24 kWh. The benefits of the battery are provided in the table below:
|Plug and Play: A single solution that eliminates the need for installation and external cables.
Compatibility: The battery is compatible with market leading single-phase and three-phase inverters.
Battery Chemistry: The battery is available using cobalt-free lithium iron phosphate material which ensures maximum safety, power delivery, and life cycle.
Optimization: Self-consumption optimization for both residential and commercial applications.
Increased Capacity: Available in the highest capacity of 24 kWh, with a maximum output current of 250 A and a peak output count of 360 A for five seconds.
The battery storage system provides the capacity and power that the consumer requires, saving money on energy bills while keeping the home powered and reducing reliance on the power grid.The battery is configured to meet the requirements on the basis of budget and energy consumption profile, with as few as 3 battery modules covering the capacity of 9 kWh and a power output of 4.5 kW to as many as six modules covering the capacity of 18 kWh and a power output of 9 kW. The material used in the battery is Lithium Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC). Now, it is necessary to observe the pros and cons of the battery to compare it with the previously discussed batteries.
· It is available in a modular design.
· The company provides a 10-year warranty.
· Equipped with an internship application and control unit.
· Compatible with many solar panels and inverters
· 100% emission-free and does not require fossil fuels.
· Available in different sizes of nine kWh, 12 kWh, 15 kWh and 18 kWh.
· It is quite expensive.
· The cost of a solar PV system incorporating this battery does not account for installation costs or the cost of equipment such as solar panels and an inverter.
LG Energy Solutions has been focusing on the integration of battery energy systems incorporating lithium and batteries. The company has been ranked as one of the world’s biggest manufacturers, with 29,000 employees and different manufacturing facilities located in China, South Korea, and United States. Now, the diversified applications of batteries, incorporating electric vehicles, portable electronics, stationary applications, and home storage systems, are all under the account of the company. The company has produced a famous LG Chem RESU battery, which is basically a DC-coupled battery system with 48 volts and 400 volts options. The chemistry of the battery is the same as that of the Genrac PWRCell Battery, which has the material Lithium Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC). The battery’s features are discussed further below.
|Life cycle: Up to 4000 as claimed by the company.
Warranty: Up to 10 years.
Sizes: Availability of different sizes up to 6.5 kWh, 9.8 kWh, 13 kWh, and 16 kWh.
Compatibility: Compatible with a large number of famous inverters such as SMA, Sungrow, Solar Edge, and Solis Inverters.
Efficiency: Up to 96%.
Simulation: Provides a simulator to the consumer to determine the cost, savings, and electricity usage along with the generation on an annual, monthly, and daily basis.
Diversity: The battery is available in six different sizes, ratings, and specifications to meet the energy demands of residential and commercial consumers.
The Q Cells company was initially a German solar company, but is now based in Seoul, South Korea. The company has proven to be one of the top solar panel manufacturing companies, with a high reliability score and the trust of consumers.
Q Cells Home Battery Systems contain different configurations and sizes, among which the hydrated battery is the Q Cells CORE H5S Battery. The battery has been available in multiple sizes, like other batteries with the scalability feature. The three main sizes are 6.8 kWh, 13.7 kWh, and 20.5 kWh. For the smallest size of the battery, 95% of the capacity can be utilized, and the power output is 3.3 kW with a backup power of 5 kW by utilizing two batteries. The features of this battery are:
|Life cycle: Up to 6,000 as claimed by the company.
Warranty: Up to 15 years which is quite a competitive advantage compared to other batteries.
Sizes: Availability of different sizes up to 6.8 kWh, 13.7 kWh, and 20 kWh.
Compatibility: Q Cells Q Home hybrid inverter only (disadvantage).
Efficiency: Up to 96%.
Battery chemistry: This battery involved the utilization of slightly different materials as compared to other batteries, which are Samsung SDI lithium cells.
Power Plus Energy is an Australian energy storage company that provides multiple options for storage, such as Australian LiFe and Eco Series batteries, Australian Rack and Slim Line Series Cabinets, and Australian Escape Series BESS solutions. The main focus of the energy storage company is longevity, reliability, and ease of usage. The company ensures a plug and play feature in the battery. Among those batteries, the discussion will be carried out about the battery which can support the residential premises. The features of the battery are discussed in accordance with its residential capacity.
Warranty: Up to 10 years.
Nominal Capacity: 3.8 kWh/74.2 Ah.
Management of Status: Temperature, Voltage, and Current of the Cell Pack.
Efficiency: More than 96%.
Incorporation of telecommunication and SCADA system
The company has gained a good reputation among Chinese inverter manufacturers and has made some progress in Europe through partnerships with some well-known European manufacturers. The company had been founded in 2010 and entered the Australian solar market in 2012 to offer consumers a vast range of solutions at residential, commercial, and utility scales. Up until now, the company has been able to sell more than two million inverters. In 2014, the company developed hybrid inverters, which gave it the motivation to work on energy storage solutions. When it comes to battery systems, it has been discovered that lithium iron phosphate cells have been used to build multiple battery solutions for low-voltage applications with 48 volts and high-voltage applications. The impact is an increase in lifespan, performance, and safety and a reduction of the risk associated with thermal runaway or overheating. Some battery modules have been shown in the figure below. The low-voltage batteries that support the residential system have been discussed.
From the figure, the SECU-A Series battery has a low voltage of 5.4 kWh, which can be scaled up to 32.4 kWh. Furthermore, the Lynx Home U Series battery is a modified version of the SECU-A Series battery, with the same ratings.On the contrary, Lynx Home S Series and SECU-S Series are high voltage 2.56 kWh modules that are scalable up to 20.5 kWh. Some features of the Home U Series Lynx Battery are:
|Capacity: 5.4kWh having usable capacity of 90%.
Scalability: Up to 28.8 kWh by usage of 6 parallel combined batteries.
Repairing feature: Automatic rebooting after low voltage cutout and diagnosis, as well as firmware upgrades.
Protection: IP65 protection for outdoor installation safety.
Installation Method: Ground Mounted and Wall Mounted.