A company is using AI and EV batteries to inject storage flexibility into hard-pressed energy grids
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Spotted: The energy transition is one of the most complex challenges facing industrialised societies, requiring widespread social and technological change. A study by Eurelectric found that over one-third of the EU’s power grids are already over 40 years old, and this will increase to 50 per cent by 2030. This lack of modernisation reduces flexibility and has a negative impact on both sustainability and cost. At the same time, as the grid transitions to variable renewable energy sources like solar and wind, there is a growing need for energy storage to smooth out peaks and troughs in generation.
To correct the imbalance in supply and demand, UK startup Allye has developed distributed energy storage at the grid edge by creating energy storage systems that use second-life electric vehicle (EV) batteries. These modular systems are flexible and managed via the cloud, with technology, including digital twins, machine learning, and artificial intelligence (AI), optimising behaviour and performance.
Allye’s cofounder and CEO Jonathan Carrier told Springwise that the company delivers energy storage “that is two times cheaper and with 60 per cent lower embedded CO2 than comparable systems by repurposing EV batteries.”
A key differentiator for Allye is the fact that it repurposes whole battery packs intact, including the battery management system, cooling, and cables. By combining several of these battery packs, the startup creates its innovative energy storage system, dubbed the Max, which can even combine two different lithium-ion battery chemistries.
Carrier added that Allye will be installing its first system with a customer shortly and is hoping to start series production in the second quarter of 2024. The company is backed by two cleantech VCs, Elbow Beach Capital and Alpha Future Funds.
Injecting more flexibility into energy grids is the goal of a number of energy tech innovations, including plug-and-play small wind turbines for micro-grids and the use of superconducting power lines.
Written By: Lisa Magloff