Breakthrough Flow Battery Cell Stack

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Program:
GRIDS
Award:
$3,599,894
Location:
East Hartford, Connecticut
Status:
ALUMNI
Project Term:
09/09/2010 - 09/30/2013

Technology Description:

United Technologies Research Center (UTRC) is developing a flow battery with a unique design that provides significantly more power than today's flow battery systems. A flow battery is a cross between a traditional battery and a fuel cell. Flow batteries store their energy in external tanks instead of inside the cell itself. Flow batteries have traditionally been expensive because the battery cell stack, where the chemical reaction takes place, is costly. In this project, UTRC is developing a new stack design that achieves 10 times higher power than today's flow batteries. This high power output means the size of the cell stack can be smaller, reducing the amount of expensive materials that are needed. UTRC's flow battery will reduce the cost of storing electricity for the electric grid, making widespread use feasible.

Potential Impact:

If successful, UTRC's redesigned flow battery cell stack would enable energy producers to store power and balance intermittent energy production from renewable energy sources, transmitting it to regions that need energy at any given moment.

Security:

A more efficient and reliable grid would be more resilient to potential disruptions.

Environment:

Electricity generation accounts for over 40% of U.S. carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Enabling large-scale contributions of wind and solar power for our electricity generation would result in a substantial decrease in CO2 emissions.

Economy:

Increases in the availability of wind and solar power would reduce fossil fuel demand, resulting in reduced fuel prices and more stable electricity rates.

Contact

ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Paul Albertus
Project Contact:
Mr. Michael Perry
Press and General Inquiries Email:
ARPA-E-Comms@hq.doe.gov
Project Contact Email:
perryml@utrc.utc.com

Partners

Clipper Windpower Technologies
University of Texas, Austin
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne

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Release Date:
03/02/2010