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Batería electroquímica de flujo ácido-base para almacenamiento de electricidad

Resumen

Tipo:
Oferta Tecnológica
Referencia:
TOES20170405001
Publicado:
24/04/2017
Caducidad:
24/04/2018
Resumen:
Un grupo de investigación español ha desarrollado un sistema sencillo de almacenamiento de electricidad que utiliza reactivos de bajo coste y respetuosos con el medioambiente. Puesto que las reacciones son reversibles, la acidez y basicidad de las soluciones pueden reducirse o incrementarse para proporcionar electricidad. La energía se almacena o genera dependiendo de si los sistemas se emplean como celda galvánica o electrolítica respectivamente. La tecnología se utiliza para almacenamiento de electricidad a partir de fuentes renovables. El grupo de investigación busca empresas interesadas en establecer acuerdos de licencia o cooperación técnica.

Details

Tittle:
Acid-base electrochemical flow battery for electric energy storage
Summary:
A Spanish research group has developed a simple electric energy storage system employing low-cost and environmentally friendly reagents. Since the reactions are reversible the acidity and basicity of the starting solutions can be decreased (obtaining electric energy - discharge) or increased, providing electric energy (charge). This technology can be used for electric energy storage from renewable sources. Companies interested in licensing or technical cooperation agreements are sought.
Description:
Current electric energy storage systems can be classified according to the type of energy used. Systems using potential energy from electrical energy are the most widely used and can be classified in two main types: (i) supercapacitor systems and (ii) systems where electrical energy is stored in two reversible redox pairs.

The charge capacity of these systems is defined by the mass of the reagents employed. They can be represented by rechargeable batteries where reagents are static, such as: traditional lead-acid (L/A); nickel-cadmium system (Ni-Cd) and nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH), lithium-ion (Li-ion) or, redox flow batteries (RFB), in which solutions associated to redox pairs are pumped to negative and positive electrode as appropriate. The main drawbacks of these batteries are their high toxicity and cost.

A Spanish research group has developed a new acid-base electrochemical flow battery that uses hydrogen both as reactant and product. Thus, energy is stored or generated depending on whether the systems is used as a galvanic or as an electrolytic cell, respectively. In this kind of charge-discharge energy storage systems, electrolytes are called positive electrolyte or posilyte and negative electrolyte or negalyte (solutions in contact with positive and negative electrodes, respectively).

The system is composed of acidic and alkaline solutions, both with a high supporting electrolyte concentration. The solutions employed are hydrochloric acid (HCl) and sodium hydroxide (NaOH) with sodium chloride (NaCl), which are cheap and environmentally friendly reagents. These solutions are separated by a proton exchange membrane, using hydrogen as both a reactant and a product. Under this configuration, neutralization energy is used as electromotive force. Figure 1 shows a diagram of the configuration of the electric energy storage system.

Figure 2 illustrates the processes taking place. During the charging process, a potential difference, mainly obtained from renewable energy sources, is applied between both electrodes and water (H2O) is reduced to hydrogen (H2) at the negative electrode, whereas hydronium ions (H+) are formed from hydrogen oxidation at the positive electrode. Both posilyte and negalyte solutions suffer and increase in acidity and alkalinity because of the ionic transport through the membrane, which is carried out by the supporting electrolyte. Thus, charge capacity is associated with final obtained values of hydronium or hydroxide activity. Interestingly enough, hydrogen is both produced and consumed so, during the charging process there is hydrogen self-supply.

On the other hand, energy can be obtained from the system during the discharging process. In alkaline medium hydrogen oxidation to water takes places at the negative electrode, while hydronium ions are reduced to hydrogen at the positive electrode (Figure 2). Moreover, as in the charging process, there is hydrogen self-supply and ionic transport through the membrane is kept by the supporting electrolyte.

This kind of pseudo-redox flow battery is comparable to other ones in which solutions associated to redox pairs are pumped to electrodes but these solutions are cheaper and safer than the other ones. Obviously, this incipient technology will be useful for electric energy storage from renewable sources, in the same way any other is.

The research group is looking for companies interested in licensing the technology. However, they are also open to technical cooperation agreements through joint research and development projects with companies or R-Y-D organizations to optimize this initial idea and/or to adapt this development to their needs for a future commercial exploitation of the patent.
Advantages and Innovations:
The main innovative aspects of this technology are:
· The own simplicity of the concept adds an undoubtable innovative character because this electric energy storage system is based in the use of "neutralization energy" of the system.
· The utilization of hydrogen production and self-supply is considered as the electromotive force that operates the system.

While, the most relevant advantages are:
· High faradic efficiency in the process (close to 95%). comparable faradic efficiency and reversibility than other systems.
· It takes advantage of hydrogen self-supply.
· Simplicity of the system and utilization of simple and environmentally friendly substances (HCl, NaOH and NaCl), which are cheaper than those used in other redox flow systems.
· High energy storage capacity as it only depends on hydronium and hydroxyl ions concentration in the system.
· No imbalance of evolved redox pairs in the system is considered. Only pH adjustment system could be used if it is necessary
Stage of Development:
Under development/lab tested
IPs:
Patent(s) applied for but not yet granted
CommeR Statunts Regarding IPR Status:
This technology is protected by a Spanish patent application.

Partner sought

Type and Role of Partner Sought:
- Type of partner sought: Companies and/or research organizations
- Specific area of activity of the partner: Electric energy generation and/or storage
- Task to be performed: development of a commercial prototype via license agreement or technical cooperation agreement (research and development project).

Client

Type and Size of Client:
University
Already Engaged in Trans-National Cooperation:
No
Languages Spoken:
English
French
Spanish

Keywords

Technology Keywords:
04002002 Producción de hidrógeno
04001003 Storage of electricity, batteries