Flow Batteries

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Basic Technology CharacteristicsSMW-Info-button.png


How it Works: Liquid anode (anolyte) and cathode (catholyte). Electrolytes flow through reaction cell and charge transfer occurs at a membrane. Vanadium-based chemistry is most mature, other chemistries being developed.
  • Power (reactor size) decoupled from Energy (tank size)
  • Limited impact of cycling on degradation
  • Higher fire safety than lithium ion
  • Lower energy density
  • Potential environmental spill risk
  • OK to poor efficiency observed to-date
  • Added system complexity with pumps etc.
Technology Variations: Vanadium Redox

Zinc Bromine

Coupled iron-chrome



Applications: Energy shifting for renewable integration, T&D deferral, potential for longer duration
AC RTE Efficiency: 50-75%
Cycle Life: 20 years, >100,000 cycles (claimed)
Technology Readiness Level (TRL): 8 - deployed (for Vanadium redox). Early deployment / continued R&D.
Installed Capacity: ~100 MW