Thursday 13th August 2020

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Posts tagged ‘Zinc8 Energy Solutions Inc (ZAIR)’

Energy storage

July 29th, 2020

It’s key to carbon-neutrality. But how to overcome raw material cost and supply security challenges?

by Ron MacDonald | July 29, 2020

The development of new, clean energy sources is of vital importance for a sustainable society. As the world, collectively, is increasingly pushing aside non-renewable sources such as natural gas, oil and coal, we look to clean energy sources such as hydro, wind and solar generation. However, in order to support the economics of renewables, energy storage allows for the capture of energy produced at one time for use at a later time and is the key to ensuring a carbon-neutral world.

It’s key to carbon-neutrality. But how to overcome raw material costs and supply security?

The total energy storage market is expected to grow to $546 billion in annual revenue by 2035, according to a report released by Lux Research. In the United States, the market value is forecast to increase from $720 million today to $5.1 billion in 2024 according to market research firm Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables, with the U.S. already seeing a 93% increase in the energy storage systems deployed in the third quarter of 2019.

Decreasing costs in accessible technologies have driven interest in energy storage forward like never before. For example, the price of lithium batteries has fallen by nearly 80% over the past five years, allowing for more integration of energy storage into solar power systems. Even more affordable than lithium is zinc. Zinc-air batteries empower the lowest cost of energy storage in the market for long-duration applications, resolving the intermittent and unpredictable nature of renewable energy sources such as wind and solar at an economic price.

Lithium-ion cells lose their charge over time, whereas zinc-air batteries maintain their full charging capacity for the up to 20-year lifecycle of the battery. Zinc-air energy storage systems are capable of economically storing energy from eight hours to 100-plus hours. This is considerably longer than the four-to-six-hour upper economic limit for lithium-ion. The lithium-ion battery costs flatten out at six hours, while zinc-air battery costs per kWh installed become even more cost-effective over longer durations.

A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19

Ron MacDonald: “Zinc is abundant in North
America and its price has been very stable
over the past 20 years. All of the other major
components of the zinc-air battery are also
available in North America.”

The growth of the energy storage market is driven by the growing demand for high-capacity, safe, cost-effective and eco-friendly energy storage solutions. The global metal-air battery market size is estimated to grow from US$438 million in 2020 to US$842 million by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 14%, reports ResearchAndMarkets.com, which segments the market into zinc-air, lithium-air, aluminum-air and iron-air.

Dependency on a supply chain of hardware components, metals and chemicals, many of which come from outside North America, is a challenge for the growing energy storage industry. Metals such as lithium, vanadium, rare earths and cobalt used today in many energy storage batteries are impacted by price volatility, geopolitical concerns, security of supply, as well as coronavirus-related supply chain disruptions. Those same risks do not apply to zinc energy flow batteries.

Countries that are major producers of raw materials required for battery production have been subject to strict restrictions to control the spread of the virus. For example, Australian lithium production companies have set up strict guidelines for businesses in the industry in terms of long-distance travel restrictions. In contrast, zinc is abundant in North America and its price has been very stable over the past 20 years. All of the other major components of the zinc-air battery are also available in North America, providing a low-cost, robust and safe energy storage solution that has not been impacted by the pandemic. Zinc-air batteries offer a homegrown solution supporting the transition to a cleaner, greener post Covid-19 world.

 

Ron MacDonald is president/CEO of Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR, the leader in zinc-air battery technology. The Zinc-Air Flow Battery from Zinc8 is an energy storage unit designed to serve a wide range of long-duration applications for microgrids and utilities. He can be reached at ron@zinc8energy.com and on LinkedIn.

Read Keeping the Lights On by Ron MacDonald.

Watch an online presentation from Zinc8 Energy Solutions.

Ron MacDonald of Zinc8 Energy Solutions discusses the advantages of his company’s electricity storage system

July 13th, 2020

…Read more

Zinc8 Energy Solutions builds on New York connections with new U.S. subsidiary

June 4th, 2020

by Greg Klein | June 4, 2020

Following the announcement of two projects in the energy-hungry American northeast, this Vancouver-headquartered company has created a wholly owned U.S. subsidiary. On June 4 Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR unveiled Zinc8 Energy Solutions (USA) Inc.

Zinc8 Energy Solutions builds on New York connections with new U.S. subsidiary

A seemingly insatiable appetite for
electricity characterizes New York City.

“Our recent New York project announcements and our acceptance into the ACRE Incubator program at the Urban Future Lab have clearly demonstrated that the government and businesses of New York state are the right partners to develop the U.S. market for our technology,” said CEO Ron MacDonald.

“Our decision to establish our U.S. presence in New York state is a logical next step as we advance towards full commercialization over the next 24 months.”

In January the company’s proprietary energy storage technology was chosen out of more than 60 contestants for a New York Power Authority demo facility. In March Zinc8 signed an agreement with Digital Energy Corp to install a 100 kW/1.5 MWh storage system in Brooklyn. Last month’s entry into the ACRE Incubator at New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering benefits Zinc8 with a program that supports early-stage clean-tech companies.

Zinc8 describes its technology as a zinc-air regenerative fuel cell that’s scaleable from 20 kW to 50 MW for durations of eight hours or more, offering a cost-effective alternative to the fixed power/energy ratio of lithium-ion batteries. Applications can range from microgrids to utilities.

Read an op-ed by Zinc8 CEO Ron MacDonald: A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19.

Zinc8 Energy Solutions makes additional New York climate change connections

May 7th, 2020

by Greg Klein | May 7, 2020

A company with proprietary energy storage technology has made further inroads into New York state. Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR has been accepted into the ACRE Incubator Program, an initiative supporting early-stage venture clean-tech companies. ACRE comprises the flagship program of the Urban Future Lab at New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering. ACRE’s funding comes from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, NYU and corporate partners.

Zinc8 Energy Solutions makes additional New York climate change connections

Long-term storage units from Zinc8’s Vancouver
facility will provide energy for New York state.
(Photo: Zinc8 Energy Solutions)

“New York state has been a driving force in the advancement of our patented zinc-air technology toward full commercialization,” said Zinc8 president/CEO Ron MacDonald. Joining ACRE offers the company “unmatched access to strategic advice, introductions to industry stakeholders, marketing and branding support, investor networks, and access to a community of like-minded founders. We look forward to this unique opportunity of strengthening and accelerating our ambitions by working alongside some of the world’s most exciting new clean-tech companies, technology innovators and industry experts.”

The company’s zinc-air regenerative fuel cell offers long-term electricity storage scaleable from 20 kW to 50 MW for durations of eight hours or more, making it suitable for both microgrids and utilities. Energy storage capacity is determined only by the size of the zinc storage tank, making the unit a cost-effective, scaleable alternative to the fixed power/energy ratio of lithium-ion batteries, Zinc8 explains.

The system stores electricity in zinc particles instead of relying on the battery minerals lithium, vanadium or cobalt, which face higher costs along with supply chain challenges. Zinc particles combine with oxygen while the system delivers electricity. When the system recharges, the zinc particles are regenerated and oxygen is returned.

Zinc8 already has two projects underway to install its storage units in New York. Last March Zinc8 announced an agreement with Digital Energy Corp to install a 100 kW/1.5 MWh system in Brooklyn.

The previous January, Zinc8’s unit was chosen for a demo facility in western New York by the state’s largest public electricity utility, the New York Power Authority.

Read A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19, by Ron MacDonald.

Keeping the lights on

May 4th, 2020

A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19

by Ron MacDonald | May 4, 2020

A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19

Environmental sustainability places increasing emphasis
on energy storage for residential, commercial and industrial uses.

 

Despite the wrecking ball that the pandemic has imposed on the global economy, businesses and residences continue to need reliable power. Since the discovery of electricity, we have sought effective methods to store that energy for use on demand. Over the last century, the energy storage industry has advanced, adapted and transformed in response to shifting energy requirements and advances in technology.

A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19

Intermittent generation and off-grid
consumption both call for energy storage.

Our global initiative to control the coronavirus has meant many residents stayed at home and factories shut down. That had an unintended effect—less air pollution. Cleaner air can improve public health, maybe even save lives.

Energy storage can help us maintain a cleaner world by creating the economics needed to support more investment into clean, green renewable energy. Due to concerns about the environmental impacts of fossil fuels and the capacity and resilience of energy grids around the world, engineers and policymakers are increasingly turning their attention to energy storage solutions.

The global rise in electricity generation from renewable sources has led to increased demand for advanced batteries that can be used to firm this intermittent supply. This requirement is particularly important in areas where grid connections may be tenuous, unreliable or even non-existent. Additional demand for advanced batteries is presented by grid applications such as peak-shifting and T&D (Transmission and Distribution) deferral.

Energy storage systems provide a wide array of technological approaches to managing our power supply in order to create a more resilient energy infrastructure and bring cost savings to utilities and consumers.

Demand for the more traditional battery backup application is also increasing for reasons such as the desire to replace diesel generators and the increasing reliance of business on a dependable energy source. Without batteries, solar panels and wind turbines become useless when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow. Batteries allow the use of electricity whenever it’s needed, not only when it’s generated.

A look at energy storage during and beyond COVID-19

Ron MacDonald: “One of the challenges to
growing a North American energy storage
industry has been a dependency on a
supply chain of hardware components,
metals and chemicals, many of which
come from outside North America.”

MarketsandMarkets’ study COVID-19 Impact on Battery Energy Storage Market states the market is projected to grow from US$5.7 billion in 2020 to US$7.3 billion by 2021. The study adds that the “major factors driving the battery energy storage industry include the growing need for continuous power for critical infrastructure sectors and the rising need to integrate renewable energy sources and rural electrification.”

One of the challenges to growing a North American energy storage industry has been a dependency on a supply chain of hardware components, metals and chemicals, many of which come from outside North America. As well, metals such as lithium and vanadium used in some batteries are impacted by price volatility and security of supply.

However, those same risks do not apply to zinc-air batteries. Zinc is abundant and inexpensive, with a significant North American supply. Its chemistry is robust and safe. Our zinc-air battery has decoupled energy and power, making it one of the lowest-cost long-duration battery storage solutions available.

Post-pandemic, there is no doubt that our collective future requires clean air and our pathway to that environmentally sound planet demands energy storage systems. A “bet” on energy storage is a wager that will deliver a cleaner planet that will thrive for current and future generations.

Ron MacDonald is president/CEO of Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR, the leader in zinc-air battery technology. The Zinc-Air Flow Battery from Zinc8 is an energy storage unit designed to serve a wide range of long-duration applications for microgrids and utilities. He can be reached at ron@zinc8energy.com and on LinkedIn.

Digital Energy CEO William Cristofaro discusses the use of Zinc8 Energy Solutions’ fuel cell in a New York Combined Heat and Power plant

April 30th, 2020

…Read more

Zinc8 Energy Solutions signs second New York deal

March 11th, 2020

by Greg Klein | March 11, 2020

Update: Effective March 20, 2020, MGX Renewables will trade as Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR.

After inking an agreement with the state power authority in January, a provider of innovative long-term energy storage announced a second foray into New York. MGX Renewables CSE:MGXR has been chosen by Digital Energy Corp to install a 100 kW/1.5 MWh zinc-air energy storage system in Brooklyn. The deal will get C$2.5 million in support from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, a public benefit corporation committed to renewable energy and energy efficiency.

MGX Renewables Zinc8 Energy Solutions signs second New York deal

Zinc8’s Vancouver manufacturing plant
prepares to serve New York markets.

Using proprietary technology, Zinc8’s zinc-air regenerative fuel cell offers long-term electricity storage scaleable from 20 kW to megawatts, suitable for microgrids and utilities. The system provides the lowest costs for storage longer than eight hours, the company states.

Digital Energy develops Combined Heat and Power plants, solar systems and microgrids. The agreement calls for Zinc8’s system to be installed at a CHP plant now operating in Brooklyn. “This project is focused on advancing, developing and field testing the Zinc8 storage technology that will address cost, performance and integration challenges in New York state,” Zinc8 noted.

The agreement also calls for Zinc8 and Digital Energy to consider joint proposals on other projects. In return for the Brooklyn referral, Zinc8 will grant options to Digital Energy, which will also receive MGXR shares as the Brooklyn project advances.

“The Zinc8 system addresses several critical needs of on-site electric energy storage—price point economics, system robustness under real-world use and safety,” commented Digital Energy president/CEO William Cristofaro. “We see the Zinc8 system as very promising for integration into our existing and developing customer base of over 100 on-site power plants, solar systems and microgrids.”

In January the New York Power Authority chose Zinc8 out of more than 60 contenders to provide a 100 kW/1 MWh storage system in a demo facility for commercial or industrial use.

Zinc8’s system also has a residential application at suburban Vancouver’s 75.9 House, an innovative design that won a Future Project of the Year award at the World Architecture Festival 2019 in Amsterdam.

Last month the company closed a $3-million private placement.

New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul comments on the selection of Zinc8 Energy Solutions to provide an electricity storage demo facility

February 12th, 2020

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MGX Renewables/Zinc8 Energy Solutions chosen for New York clean electricity project

January 17th, 2020

by Greg Klein | January 17, 2020

Update: Effective March 20, 2020, MGX Renewables will trade as Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR.

The largest state public power organization in the U.S. will deploy a Vancouver company’s innovative energy storage technology in a demo facility. The New York Power Authority selected MGX Renewables’ (CSE:MGXR) zinc-air system out of more than 60 contestants in the NYPA Innovation Challenge staged by the utility and the Urban Future Lab at New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering.

MGX Renewables/Zinc8 Energy Solutions chosen for New York clean electricity project

One of the decisive factors in the selection of Zinc8 was its ability to provide longer-term storage of eight hours or more. The patented system stores electricity in the form of zinc particles, using none of the normally expensive battery minerals lithium, vanadium or cobalt. Zinc particles combine with oxygen while the system delivers electricity. When the system recharges, the zinc particles are regenerated and oxygen is returned.

The company emphasizes its potential for inexpensive mass storage that can be scaled into a wide range of applications.

NYPA president/CEO Gil Quiniones called it a “low-cost, long-duration solution that addresses the unpredictability of renewable energy resources such as wind and solar, and offers environmental and efficiency benefits.”

The competition took place as part of New York’s Green New Deal, a program to achieve 3GW of energy storage by 2030 and 100% carbon-free electricity by 2040. NYPA and Zinc8 are now evaluating sites for a 100kW/1MWh storage system to serve an existing commercial or industrial NYPA customer. The project would also demonstrate Zinc8’s micro-grid potential, as well as other commercial, industrial and utility uses. Installation is expected in 2022.

NYPA will contribute US$2.55 million to the project over three years.

This investment in long-duration, low-cost energy storage technology will provide a boost to our clean energy economy, maximize the benefits of renewable resources and help in our aggressive efforts to combat climate change.—Kathy Hochul,
New York Lieutenant Governor

Commenting on the selection, New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said, “This investment in long-duration, low-cost energy storage technology will provide a boost to our clean energy economy, maximize the benefits of renewable resources and help in our aggressive efforts to combat climate change.”

Pat Sapinsley, managing director of Clean Tech Initiatives at NYU Tandon, added, “The selection of Zinc8 Energy Solutions illustrates how important and effective a public-academic collaboration like the NYPA Innovation Challenge can prove. By awarding this contract, New York State is not only accelerating its own clean-energy future but building confidence in the clean-power industry overall.”

One residential application of Zinc8 will be 75.9 House, an architectural innovation under construction in suburban Vancouver. Storing solar-generated energy, the unit will start at 40 kW/160 kWh and can be scaled for greater demand.

MGX Renewables/Zinc8 provides unique energy storage for innovative building

October 16th, 2019

by Greg Klein | October 16, 2019

Update: Effective March 20, 2020, MGX Renewables will trade as Zinc8 Energy Solutions CSE:ZAIR.

New technology will help conserve energy in an architecturally distinct new home now under construction in suburban Vancouver. MGX Renewables’ (CSE:MGXR) zinc-air energy storage system has been chosen for 75.9 House, a design by acclaimed architect Omer Arbel. The building’s structure will be distinguished by cement poured into fabric forms instead of plywood structures, providing not only strong thermal insulation but also a sculpted look that blends into the landscape. Arbel’s design was one of only two Canadian projects shortlisted for the future homes award at the World Architecture Festival to be held in Amsterdam next December.

MGX Renewables Zinc8 provides unique energy storage for innovative building

A depiction of 75.9 House,
now under construction in Surrey, B.C.

The energy storage system uses proprietary and patented technology of MGX Renewables, soon to be renamed Zinc8 Energy Solutions. President/CEO Ron MacDonald called the project “a significant milestone towards the commercialization of our breakthrough, long-duration, energy storage technology.”

Drawing on solar-generated energy, storage capacity for 75.9 House will start at 40 kW and 160 kWh and can be modified to accommodate increased demand.

As a modular system, Zinc8 can deliver power ranging from 20 kW to 1 MW or more, and energy from 160 kWh to 8 MWh or more, the company stated. The rechargeable zinc-air battery “can be configured to support a wide range of discharge power, recharge power and duty cycle requirements…. A very cost-effective and scalable solution now exists as an alternative to the fixed power/energy ratio of the lithium-ion battery for users requiring high storage capacity.”

“We are extremely excited to be working with Zinc8 to implement a new innovative zinc-air energy storage system for our build,” commented property owner Joe Haley. “Working with our world class architect with the intention to achieve a net zero home in this all-concrete modern structure, we feel this house will be one for the ages with its forward thinking and design.”