Battery technologies have taken a big step forward in their capabilities to serve the needs of the energy transition. Dutch climate and green hydrogen tech company Battolyser Systems, has secured €40 million (more than $42 million) from the European Investment Bank to further develop its net zero solutions to help the EU achieve its Green Deal target before 2050.
Battolyser Systems develops the world’s first integrated battery electrolyzer system. The patented technology can store and supply power like a battery but also can produce hydrogen in one system.
According to the company, it is based on iron and nickel battery technology. The battery stores the energy from solar or wind parks during the times when they are overproducing. Normally they are sometimes shut down or throttled because the energy cannot be stored anywhere.
When the battery is charged, the power is stored as power like in a normal battery. When it is overcharged, however, a secondary electrochemical reaction causes hydrogen and oxygen production and the battery turns into an efficient and flexible electrolyzer.
It has the flexibility to be switched to being idle or even discharge the stored power into the grid when the user no longer wants to produce hydrogen at cases, for example, when power prices are too high or renewable power is too low. The stored energy can also be used in multiple ways like:
- as emergency power in an off-grid situation to reduce or eliminate the need for external battery energy storage systems (BESS),
- to trade power/sell power to the grid in expensive hours or offer ancillary services to the grid,
- to temporarily continue the production of hydrogen after the renewables source is down.
“You could say it is a battery that never fills up and an electrolyzer that is as flexible as a battery,” explained Battolyser Systems for Carbon Herald.
To a question about the duration of energy storage of the battery, Battolyser Systems explained that the battery is 100% charged as long as it is producing hydrogen and when idle, there is minimal self-discharge, typical for any battery. The self-discharge is expected to have minimal impact due to the almost constant energy production cycle of the renewables between day and night.
Additionally, Battolyser® is not expected to be idled too much as it will be active as an electrolyzer or be discharging most of the time.
The company’s technology is currently operational at a large-scale industrial gas power plant in the Netherlands. It also has a production facility in Rotterdam. The $42m financing from the European Investment Bank, backed by a guarantee from the InvestEU Fund, will enable it to scale its production facility towards mass production. It plans to build up to 200MW of stacks/year and the next production location is expected to have a nameplate capacity of 1GW of stacks per year.