N ext gen battery developer, ZAF Energy Systems has had a breakthrough with their nickel-zinc (NiZn) battery tech. They have been able to double the cycle life, and improve reliability, that will disrupt the industrial battery market. Its early days but, eyes are on this to take on lithium in the renewable storage market too.
The news follows on that Dr Kurt Salloux has joined the firm, as its Chief Technology Officer. The firm’s CEO, Randy Moore said that Dr Salloux’s input has drastically altered their R&D path. A big re-think on electrode design has meant that the expected battery cycle life will double.
The upshot of this improvement is that nickel zinc can compete with lithium ion, but minus the safety issues. Right now, the focus is on the industrial sector, but could widen to include home solar storage at some point.
Dr Salloux has more than 30 years experience, and holds a PhD in materials science and electro chemistry. His expertise is in the design and build of advanced power and energy storage systems.
He had been with Hughes Space and Communications as a research manager, working on lithium ion solutions. He was with Boeing as well, working on their next gen satellite systems. His most recent work was on advanced power and control systems for global telecoms.
Dr Salloux started with ZAF as a technical advisor to give oversight to the firm’s NiZn projects. It’s here then that he went to ZAF’s management with his new electrode design to extend cycle life.
When the idea proved itself, the prospects for it could be seen straight away. The firm then chose to invite Dr Salloux as its CTO, to bring it to market.
ZAF is installing the new tech into its plant at Joplin, Missouri. They hope to be able to ship the new NiZn batteries in Q3, 2019.
The uses for NiZn batteries is wide including: data centres, heavy trucking, remote telecommunication, and renewable energy.
NiZn batteries are ready to shake the $50 billion lead acid battery market. And sights are indeed, upon the fast growing $30 billion lithium ion market too.