- The global redox flow battery market is expected to grow from $130 million in 2018 to $370 million by 2025, at an annual growth rate of 14.3%, according to a report from China-based QY Research.
- North America and the Asia-Pacific are the two largest markets for flow battery installation capacity in the world, according to the report, accounting for more than 80% of all flow battery deployments in 2017. Europe was third with a market share of a little more than 15%.
- The technology's scalability and longer-duration capacity make bulk energy storage more cost-efficient, Peter Klauer, a senior advisor for smart grid technology at the California Independent System Operator (CAISO), told Utility Dive in May.
The development and deployment of battery-based energy storage systems is not limited to lithium-ion, which is the leading technology in the sector.
U.S. wholesale market operators, the Department of Energy (DOE) and others are looking for technologies that are safer and have a higher storage capacity. Flow batteries provide both and are gaining traction.
In a flow battery, rechargeability is provided by two chemical components dissolved in liquids contained within the system and most commonly separated by a membrane, according to the Energy Storage Association.
In April, CAISO announced a four-year pilot project intended to test and evaluate the performance of flow batteries in the commercial wholesale market. The vanadium redox battery storage pilot will provide 2 MW/8 MWh of energy storage, enough to power the equivalent of 1,000 homes for up to four hours, CAISO said.
Dominion Energy earlier this month told Utility Dive that flow batteries are one of the technologies it will look at as it determines how to best use energy storage on its grid.
While there are seven main types of flow batteries in mass production or development, according to QY Research, vanadium flow batteries lead the market with a 70% share.
Last September, DOE announced $148 million in funding for two initiatives, including $120 million over five years to renew funding for the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR) program that does research and development on new battery materials.
The money is allowing JCESR to continue its research on new materials that can improve the energy density of lithium-ion batteries and devise new concepts for flow batteries.
A recent NREL report that looked at opportunities for energy storage to replace traditional gas-turbine peaker plants in the U.S. showed that there's a market for short and long-term duration storage deployment in every market.