Second life battery packs slot straight into grid storage

Second life battery packs slot straight into grid storage

Technology News |
By Nick Flaherty

UK car maker JLR is working with Wykes Engineering to simplify energy storage systems in the UK using second-life Jaguar i-Pace battery packs.   

A single Wykes Engineering BESS uses 30 second-life i-Pace batteries from JLR and can store up to 2.5MWh of energy at full capacity. The batteries supplied have been taken from prototype and engineering test vehicles, and JLR aims to supply enough batteries to store a total of 7.5MWh of energy – enough to power 750 homes for a day – by the end of 2023.  After this point more containers can be created to house additional second-life batteries removed from used production vehicles in the future.  

Each BESS is linked to an inverter to maximise efficiency and manage energy and is capable of supplying power direct to the National Grid during peak hours as well as drawing power out of the grid during off-peak hours to store for future use. 

As part of the technical collaboration, Wykes Engineering and JLR have integrated the i-Pace battery packs without additional manufacturing steps or the removal of battery modules. The batteries are simply removed from the Jaguar I-PACE and slotted into racks in the containers on-site, helping to maximise the sustainability of the project.

“One of the major benefits of the system we’ve developed is that the containers are connected to the Grid in such a way that they can absorb solar energy ,that could otherwise be lost when the grid reaches capacity. This excess energy can now be stored in the second life I-PACE batteries and discharged later .This allows us to ‘overplant’ the solar park and maximise the amount of power we generate for the area of land we are using,” said David Wykes, managing director of Wykes Engineering.

There are many projects across Europe using early second life batteries for energy storage applications. JLR worked with Pramac last year on such a system (above).

Reusing vehicle batteries will create new circular economy business models for JLR in energy storage and beyond.  Once the battery health falls below the required level for these second-life use cases, JLR will recycle the batteries so that raw materials can be recovered for re-use as part of a true circular economy.  

JLR owner Tata is planning to build a major battery plant in the UK to supply the range of vehicles that will be fully electrified later this year.

“Using the 70-80% residual capacity in EV batteries, before being recycled, demonstrates full adoption of circularity principles,” said Francois Dossa, executive director for strategy and sustainability at JLR.

“We’re delighted to be working with Wykes Engineering on this pioneering project that will help unlock the true potential of renewable energy. Developing second-life battery projects like this is crucial to helping JLR adopt a new circular economy business model and drive us toward achieving carbon net zero by 2039,” said Reuben Chorley, sustainable industrial operations director at JLR.      

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