PEM Develops Energy Storage From Used E-Mobile Batteries

08/12/2021

The chair of Production Engineering of E-Mobility Components (PEM) at RWTH Aachen University has launched the research project "Intelligent and flexible system for the use of any 2nd-life batteries in municipal charging infrastructure" (FluxLiCon). Until the end of August 2024, the project is developing key findings for a future circular economy in mobility. To this end, "FluxLiCon" is developing and piloting a modular and flexible energy storage system from batteries that, with around 80 percent residual power, are no longer suitable for further use in electric vehicles. The architecture of the storage unit offers a grid interface for the integration of renewable energy as well as "Fast Charging" for a faster and more cost-effective setup of charging options.

  The container of the future "second-life" energy storage Copyright: © PEM RWTH Aachen

With PEM and the other project partners "Agentur für Erneuerbare Energien e.V." (AEE), PEM Motion, ConAC and DEKRA, a "Trusted Platform" is being developed as part of the project. It acts as an interface between the distributors of electric vehicle battery systems as well as the secondary users, and it provides all data relevant for the further application of used battery systems. According to PEM head Professor Achim Kampker, to validate the results, a "second-life storage system" with a capacity of one megawatt hour will be set up in Aachen. Additionally, an intelligent energy management system will be developed for data transfer back to the "trusted platform". In the further course, the focus will be on the construction and testing of two pilot plants in two different German municipalities. Both locations will be determined via a nationwide competition.

For resource efficiency and lower CO2 emissions

The background to the project is the ever-increasing importance of electromobility. However, there is criticism with regard to sustainability and the use of resources: the batteries require raw materials, production causes CO2 emissions, and after their useful life in the vehicle, many batteries are recycled directly despite their high residual capacity. In order to keep batteries in use as long and efficiently as possible in the future, initial concepts for "second life" applications have already been developed, allowing battery systems from electric vehicles to have a "second life" in stationary energy storage systems.

Further information on the project is provided here.