CT: Battery stores electrical energy in a reversible chemical reaction. The renewable energy (RE) source (PV, wind, or hydro) produces the energy, and the battery stores it for times of low or no RE production. Most batteries employed in renewable energy systems use the same electro-chemical reactions as the lead-acid battery in your car. But, unlike your car battery, they are specifically designed for deep cycling. And most renewable energy systems have batteries which store between ten and hundreds of times more energy than a car battery. This doesn’t guarantee you will have a consistent performance with batteries. One should consider backup power in case your batteries become discharged due to lack of renewable energy in the RE system or an over consumption of energy.
S: http://www.altenergy.org/renewables/battery-storage.html (last access: 27 December 2015)
N: 1. 1530s, “action of battering,” from Middle French batterie, from Old French baterie (12c.) “beating, thrashing, assault,” from batre “beat,” from Latin battuere “beat”.
Meaning shifted in Middle French from “bombardment” (“heavy blows” upon city walls or fortresses) to “unit of artillery” (a sense recorded in English from 1550s). Extension to “electrical cell” (1748, first used by Ben Franklin) is perhaps from the artillery sense via notion of “discharges” of electricity. In Middle English, bateri meant only “forged metal ware.”
2. Batteries in solar applications have to meet the demands of unstable grid energy, heavy cycling (charging and discharging) and irregular full recharging. There’s a variety of battery types fitted for these unique requirements. Considerations for choosing a battery include cost, cycle life and installation and maintenance.
3. Solar battery technologies:
- Deep-cycle, lead-acid batteries have been employed in renewable energy and reliably used in off-grid applications globally for decades.
- According to a U.S. Solar Energy Monitor report, lithium-ion batteries are the most common storage technology, regardless of application. There are three types: pouches such as in smartphones and tablets, cylindrical such as in power tools, and prismatic (which come in various shapes) such as in electronic vehicles. Prismatic types often have corrugated sides, which create air gaps between adjacent cells and can aid in cooling. The prismatic can have applications in solar energy storage, specifically lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries.
- Redox flow batteries are emerging as another storage option. Lux Research reports that falling costs will lead to a 360-MWh market in 2020, worth $190 million. The vanadium redox flow battery (VRFB) is the most mature technology in this area.
4. Battery, in electricity and electrochemistry, any of a class of devices that convert chemical energy directly into electrical energy. Although the term battery, in strict usage, designates an assembly of two or more galvanic cells capable of such energy conversion, it is commonly applied to a single cell of this kind.
5. Every battery (or cell) has a cathode, or positive plate, and an anode, or negative plate. These electrodes must be separated by and are often immersed in an electrolyte that permits the passage of ions between the electrodes. The electrode materials and the electrolyte are chosen and arranged so that sufficient electromotive force (measured in volts) and electric current (measured in amperes) can be developed between the terminals of a battery to operate lights, machines, or other devices. Since an electrode contains only a limited number of units of chemical energy convertible to electrical energy, it follows that a battery of a given size has only a certain capacity to operate devices and will eventually become exhausted. The active parts of a battery are usually encased in a box with a cover system (or jacket) that keeps air outside and the electrolyte solvent inside and that provides a structure for the assembly.
S: 1. OED – http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=battery (last access: 27 December 2015). 2 & 3. http://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2015/08/what-is-the-best-type-of-battery-for-solar-storage/ (last access: 27 December 2015)). 4 & 5. EncBrit – http://www.britannica.com/technology/battery-electronics (last access: 27 December 2015).