|14 February 2017|
A Sydney-based company’s battery storage technology is set to make a big splash in the international renewable energy market.
Ecoult has signed a global manufacturing deal and been backed by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to the tune of $4.1 million to enhance and fully commercialise its UltraBattery technology, which was originally developed by CSIRO with ARENA’s support.
ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said support for storage technologies like the UltraBattery was vital to establishing a smooth transition to a green energy future.
“ARENA is working hard to accelerate the energy storage revolution as part of its efforts to bring down costs and increase the reliability and security of renewable energy,” Mr Frischknecht said.
“Storage is critical for increasing the reliability of our on-grid and off-grid power systems. It can give customers more control over their energy by storing solar through the day to use during the evening peak.
“This latest funding supports a $10.6 million effort by Ecoult to improve its technology and pursue large-scale commercialisation. It will enhance the battery’s performance and improve its ability to support both grid and offgrid applications.”
ARENA backed Ecoult in 2013 with $583,780 for the early stage development of its technology, including optimising it for off-grid applications. This resulted in the creation of the small, kilowatt-scale battery storage device known as the ‘UltraFlex’.
Mr Frischknecht added: “Our support for Ecoult demonstrates how ARENA works across the innovation chain to support research and development and build a vital bridge between commercial adoption and uptake,” Mr Frischknecht said.
“ARENA’s early funding has helped Ecoult progress to the point where it has secured private sector investment and an international manufacturing partnership.
“Ecoult has signed a deal with Exide Industries, India’s largest battery manufacturer, which will see the UltraBattery manufactured and distributed in India and South Asia.
“ARENA’s further $4.1 million support will help Ecoult deliver on both its local and global objectives, which is a major step towards fully commercialising the UltraBattery and securing export dollars for Australian intellectual property.
“This is just one example of the way ARENA’s work is helping accelerate the shift to renewable energy in Australia and at the same time reaching around the globe.”