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Your location: Home > Related Articles > Another new type of energy storage technology is on the road to commercialization!

Another new type of energy storage technology is on the road to commercialization!

Author:QINSUN Released in:2023-12 Click:79

Recently, according to foreign media reports, zinc air flow battery company Znc8 Energy Solutions has received $9 million (approximately RMB 60.66 million) in state tax credits for its new factory built at iPark 87 Industrial Park in Ulster County, New York.
This tax credit is part of the US Inflation Reduction Act and supplements the federal investment tax credit for the US clean energy manufacturing industry, which will last for five years.
No pie will fall from the sky. In order for Zinc8 to receive a state tax credit of 60.66 million RMB, it needs to establish its first commercial manufacturing plant in New York to produce long-term energy storage systems.
Zinc8 stated that the project is its first commercial manufacturing plant established in New York, which will be used to produce long-term energy storage systems, which is of great significance to the company and a milestone in the company's transition from small-scale demonstration projects to large-scale commercialization.
Zinc8 has also committed to investing $68 million (approximately RMB 458.32 million) in the project within five years to build it into the company's headquarters in the United States.
About Zinc Air Flow Battery
Zinc air flow battery is a new type of battery composed of air electrode replacing nickel oxide electrode in zinc nickel flow battery. Its positive electrode is a dual functional layer composite oxygen electrode, and the negative electrode is a zinc electrode that deposits/dissolves on an inert current collector. The electrolyte is a flowing alkaline zinc salt solution, such as potassium hydroxide electrolyte.
At present, the zinc air flow battery energy storage system of Zinc8 works by utilizing external energy to produce zinc, which generates zinc particles and stores them in a potassium hydroxide electrolyte. The byproduct of zinc oxide generated by chemical reactions can react with oxygen to generate electricity.
Compared to other types of flow batteries, the special feature of zinc air flow batteries is the use of a semi shielded dual functional layer composite oxygen electrode design, which introduces catalysts with oxygen evolution and redox catalytic functions on both sides of the current collector to achieve the charging and discharging process of the oxygen electrode. Objectively, it is required that the oxygen released during charging does not damage the electrode, while also taking into account the catalytic activity of the oxidation-reduction reaction.
In terms of advantages, zinc air batteries have the advantages of achieving a high energy density of 1086Wh/kg, a low estimated cost of less than $10/kWh, as well as high safety and green environmental protection; The main reason that restricts the industrial development of zinc air flow batteries is their low energy efficiency and limited cycle life.
Three major issues with zinc negative electrodes
The zinc negative electrode of zinc air flow batteries mainly faces three major problems: zinc dendrites, zinc detachment, and limited surface capacity.
Zinc dendrite refers to the phenomenon where, during the charging of a zinc air flow battery, the concentration polarization on the electrode surface increases, the ion concentration decreases, and the reactant ions easily diffuse towards the protrusions on the electrode surface, inducing the growth of zinc dendrites. Zinc dendrites continue to grow, eventually piercing the separator of the liquid flow battery, causing the battery to short-circuit and fail.
Zinc detachment refers to the phenomenon where during the discharge of a zinc air flow battery, the metal zinc in close contact with the electrode preferentially dissolves, causing the zinc metal deposited on the electrode surface to detach from the electrode and become unusable, leading to a decrease in battery performance.
Limited surface capacity refers to the fact that during the charging process of a battery, due to the fact that the electrodes of the zinc air flow battery are mostly porous carbon felt and flat electrodes, zinc ions and zincate ions will be continuously reduced to metallic zinc on the electrode and deposited on it. When the electrode surface is completely covered with zinc metal, electrodeposition is hindered, causing the problem of limited battery surface capacity. At that time, continuing to charge will cause a sharp increase in battery charging voltage, triggering irreversible hydrogen evolution reactions in the negative electrode plate battery.