Vanadium flow batteries (“VFB”)

A major new use of vanadium is now emerging as the electrolyte in VFB’s used for energy storage. Although lithium-ion batteries are better known and are more suitable for mobile applications where weight is important, VFB’s have several advantages for fixed, high capacity and long term storage, either as part of a grid or for isolated mini-grids. The main advantages are:

  • No degradation over time or after repeated charge and discharge cycles

  • Can be fully charged and fully discharged without damage

  • Capacity can be scaled independently of power by addition of larger electrolyte tanks

  • No fire hazard

  • Suitable for long discharge periods, for example, to store solar energy during the day and release over the whole evening and night

Example of the vanadium flow battery for alternative energy storage