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Automakers are focused on EV batteries’ second life

Most automakers have not absolutely ramped up manufacturing of EVs, however they’re already contemplating second-life makes use of for the batteries going into these automobiles.

Audi is working with startup Nunam to put in battery modules from decommissioned check automobiles into electrical rickshaws, that are scheduled to hit Indian streets in early 2023 as a part of a pilot venture. They’re going to be made out there to a non-profit group, and used to move items to marketplace for sale, in line with an Audi press launch.

After preliminary use in a automobile, these battery modules can nonetheless retailer lots of vitality, Nunam cofounder Prodip Chatterjee mentioned within the launch. With their gentle weight and decrease energy and vary necessities, rickshaws are a perfect use case, he mentioned.

And customarily talking, because the Wall Street Journal just lately identified, repurposing EV batteries might assist increase renewable vitality in addition to assist remedy waste challenges.

Electric rickshaw powered by Audi battery modules

Electrical rickshaw powered by Audi battery modules

 

Electrical rickshaws are already widespread in India, however they’re usually powered by lead-acid batteries with a shorter lifespan than the lithium-ion battery modules from Audi EVs, and are sometimes disposed of improperly, in line with Audi and Nunam.

To handle emissions from charging electrical rickshaws from India’s largely coal-fired grid, Nunam can also be creating photo voltaic charging stations. And it plans to make use of second-life batteries in vitality storage as properly.

That is simply the most recent of many initiatives searching for to search out second-life makes use of for EV batteries. One other current instance comes from Volvo Group (a separate entity from Volvo Automobiles), which purchased a ten% stake in United Kingdom-based vitality storage agency Related Power as an outlet for used batteries from its electrical vans.

Connected Energy battery energy storage unit

Related Power battery vitality storage unit

 

Automakers have been exhibiting off second-life battery functions for years. Nissan and General Motors unveiled demonstration initiatives in 2015 utilizing Leaf and Chevrolet Volt batteries, respectively. Across the identical time, Toyota unveiled an vitality storage array at Yellowstone Nationwide Park comprised of Camry Hybrid battery packs.

California-based B2U Storage Options is already being profitable with second-life Nissan Leaf batteries in vitality storage. Rivian also has pointed out that the configuration and structure of its battery pack was decided partly with second-life makes use of in thoughts.

These initiatives are based mostly on the idea that lots of batteries might be left over as soon as the automobiles they’re put in in attain the tip of their usable lives. That mentioned, with uncooked supplies nonetheless so restricted, there’s some stage of debate over whether or not reuse or recycling is the higher possibility.

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