September 10, 2020: Eos Energy Storage, the zinc battery maker, announced on August 31 it had received orders totalling 1.5GWh for its systems which, it says, are a viable alternative to lithium-ion stationary storage systems.
Trademarked as the Eos Aurora, the batteries are a zinc hybrid cathode battery technology with an aqueous electrolyte. Although the company would not give the finer details of the technology, it did say it had similarities with flow batteries.
“Eos technology has the higher energy and lower power like flow, but provides daily cycling with low maintenance and flexibility,” it told BESB.
The batteries themselves are small — just 23 inches (585mm) x 16.9 inches (428mm) — and housed in a 20ft container as standard, for a 150kW/600kWh four-hour system. They can be scaled up to any capability. The firm says they are designed to last 5,000 cycles for a 15-year life with no subcooling or pumps required.
Eos is pushing its technology as a credible alternative to lithium-ion.
“Lithium-ion is the mainstay of the energy storage market,” it says. “However, Li-ion batteries have several downsides. Li-ion systems cannot effectively discharge for longer than four hours at a time; there are risks in the supply chain, which can increase costs and likelihood of disruption; there are human rights concerns around sourcing of materials for Li-ion manufacturing; there is a tendency for lithium batteries to overheat, which creates risk of fire; and there are challenges to safely recycle retired lithium batteries.
“Although improvements in lithium battery compositions are making them safer and more scalable, a number of new energy storage chemistries have emerged, and among them are zinc battery technologies.”
Eos says 1GWh of the orders has been signed with International Electric Power in Texas for standalone grid connected projects, which will be delivered in the third quarter of 2021.
“IEP has entered into this partnership with Eos to help lead the long duration energy storage transition to new, safer and more reliable alternative technologies to lithium-ion,” says the company. “IEP also benefits from Eos’ minimal auxiliary power requirements (HVAC systems are not required), and simple operations and maintenance throughout the equipment’s 20-year life expectancy.”
Texas independent system operator ERCOT (the Electric Reliability Council of Texas) has been keen to increase the storage in the region it operates, signing 200MW of grid-scale battery storage systems just last month.
The other 500MWh of Eos Power’s systems will be supplied to Carson Hybrid Energy Storage in California, which is experiencing some of the most severe wildfires in its history, gobbling up thousands of acres and knocking out power supplies.
“The recent rolling blackouts in California call for another transformation in energy, this time related to supply,” said Balki Iyer, chief commercial officer of Eos.
“Long duration energy storage is going to play a pivotal role in this transformation over the next three to five years. Eos’s zinc batteries are non-flammable, built with environmentally friendly materials, and are manufactured right here in the US.”
Separately, on September 8, Eos Energy Storage announced it would merge with B Riley Principal Merger Corp II by the end of the year. The business combination values Eos at around $550 million based on a two times multiple of estimated 2022 revenue and around half of estimated 2024 revenues,
The firm will be listed on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol EOSE.