Worldwide revenue from advanced batteries for utility-scale energy storage applications will grow from $164 million in 2014 to more than $2.5 billion in 2023, according to a report from Navigant Research.
Batteries have not traditionally been an integral part of the utility grid, primarily due to concerns about cost, safety, durability and efficiency. Today, however, technological advances in electrochemistry have enabled a new generation of advanced batteries to start playing an important role in grid management.
“Unlike most other networked systems, the electricity grid functions mostly without any stored resources,” says Sam Jaffe, principal research analyst with Navigant Research. “Innovative electrochemistries — particularly lithium ion and its subchemistries — have solved many of the challenges inherent in battery energy storage, and there are more than a dozen individual applications that could utilize batteries for energy storage.”
The clear market leader in utility-scale applications of batteries is lithium ion, which offers the best mix of performance specifications (including energy density, volumetric density, cycle life, calendar life, safety and cost) for most energy storage applications. Other battery technologies, however, remain viable, according to the report.
Flow batteries have been shown to excel at long-duration energy storage applications, and advanced lead-acid batteries have proven to be excellent performers in power-intensive applications.