The world's largest second-use battery storage unit will soon go into operation in the Westphalian town of Lünen. A joint venture between Daimler AG, The Mobility House AG and Getec, it will be operated from the beginning of next year at the site of Remondis SE and marketed in the German electricity balancing sector.
A special feature of this venture is the use of second-life battery systems from electric vehicles. In Lünen, systems from the second generation of smart electric drive vehicles are being incorporated into a stationary storage unit with a total capacity of 13 MWh. The process demonstrably improves the environmental performance of electric vehicles, thereby helping to make e-mobility more economically efficient.
Under the banner of 'E-Mobility thought to the end', Daimler, The Mobility House, Getec and Remondis are mapping out the entire battery value creation and recycling chain with their project in Lünen. Right from the manufacturing and reprocessing of battery systems at Daimler’s subsidiary - Accumotive, the corresponding range of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles from Daimler AG, and the installation and marketing of stationary battery storage units in the energy markets by The Mobility House and Getec, recycling of the battery systems at the end of their lifecycle and feeding the valuable raw materials back into the production cycle will be done. The task is set to be the future responsibility of Remondis.
High-performance battery storage units are an important component in the successful transition to renewable energy. With an increasing supply of electricity from fluctuating renewable energies, such as wind farms or solar power stations, they are the key to stabilising power grids. They can be used to level out energy fluctuations with virtually no loss – a role that is partly fulfilled by fossil power plants at present. This can help to speed up the energy revolution and eliminates the cost of expanding the grid and building new power plants.
With their second-use battery storage project in Lünen, the four partners are proving that the lifecycle of a plug-in or electric vehicle battery does not end after its automotive application. Depending on the model, Daimler guarantees its electric vehicle customers a battery life of up to 10 years. However, the battery systems are still fully operational after this point, as the low levels of power loss are only of minor importance when used in stationary storage. It is estimated that the unit can operate efficiently in a stationary application for at least another 10 years.
This temporarily delays the final phase of the value chain: material recycling. Re-use of the lithium-ion modules from electric cars in second-use battery storage units, however, practically doubles their commercial service life.