Urban Electric Power and Pine Gate Renewables partner in US

Urban Electric Power is to supply 4,550MWh of its rechargeable zinc alkaline batteries to Pine Gate Renewables for US solar and energy storage projects

Urban Electric Power is to supply an initial 4,550MWh of its rechargeable zinc alkaline batteries over the next five years to Pine Gate Renewables for their growing pipeline of solar-coupled and standalone energy storage projects across the US.

Pine Gate has over 1GW of operating solar assets in the country with over 16GW in active development, including hybrid, standalone solar, and standalone energy storage projects across the country.

An MoU agreement allows it access to Urban Electric Power batteries each year, under preferential terms, that will enable their customers the freedom to choose a technology that meets long-term reliability, energy and capacity needs.

Urban Electric Power’s patented technology tweaks the chemistry of the familiar household AA battery to make it rechargeable. This enables safer, more affordable energy storage solutions, which the New York-based company offers under the Ohm label to homes and commercial and industrial customers, and to utility-scale infrastructure projects branded as Zeus. The consumer version is on display at Cleanpower in San Antonio this week.

The zinc alkaline cells avoid several issues, that are otherwise known challenges with other battery chemistries including lithium - such as high integration costs, short and uncertain supply, geopolitical complications, and tendency to fuel fires that are hard to extinguish, a problem known as thermal runaway.

The batteries are assembled at its factory in Pearl River, New York.

The Urban Electric Power products are certified to UL standards as not subject to thermal runaway, meaning they are fire-safe for indoor installations in cities. They contain no cobalt, whose mining in Africa carries human rights concerns; nor lead, which is responsible for exposing 1 in 3 children worldwide to lead poisoning.

Under development since 2012 by researchers at City College of New York, the rechargeable zinc alkaline technology has already been tested and proven for large-scale uses such as in the San Diego Supercomputer Center, and at commercial-industrial locations to offer backup power and dispatchable energy storage to the power grid.

​“As we phase out fossil fuels and add distributed renewables, demand will only grow for replacing old battery technology with cost-effective energy storage that is safer, longer-lasting, and more environmentally friendly,” said Ann Marie Augustus, Urban Electric Power’s Vice President of Operations.

“We offer non-toxic, utility-scale battery energy storage with no thermal runaway fire risk, at a cost and environmental footprint less than standard lithium-ion or lead batteries.”

Raafe Khan, Director of Energy Storage at Pine Gate Renewables, said it is committed to supporting partners and customers with safe, domestically manufactured, scalable, reliable, and durable solutions that they can connect with for their storage needs.

"This is just the start of an exciting journey ahead for both organisations and we look forward to working with the Urban Electric Power team in building a sustainable energy storage ecosystem," he said.

ACE Green Recycling to build four lithium-ion battery recycling facilities

US-based recycling technology company ACE Green Recycling (ACE) plans to build and operate four new lithium-ion battery recycling facilities with a planned total annual capacity of over 30,000 tons.

ACE is currently planning for facilities in Thailand, India, and USA, with planned capacities of 10,000 tons between India and Thailand and 20,000 tons in the USA. Operations in India are expected to commence by the third quarter of 2022 with initial processing capacity of 1800 tons per year, while Thailand and USA would come online in 2023 with full operational capacity planned to be achieved across all facilities by 2025.

The four locations will tap into previously underserved recycling markets and provide regional markets with an emissions-free, carbon-neutral recycling solution to support the global adoption of lithium-ion batteries. 

"With the set-up of these new facilities we would strategically leverage our global supply chain experience to not only cater to the North American markets but also Asia where we have a very strong on the ground experience and existing relationships," said Nishchay Chadha, ACE's Co-Founder and CEO.

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