As JLR looks forward to a more electric future, one thing that's going to be an issue is what to do with the batteries from decommissioned vehicles. One idea that JLR is tinkering with is using old Jaguar I-Pace batteries to make storage systems to help supplement the UK's National Grid.
Using thirty EV batteries taken from decommissioned I-Paces, the storage system combines with a wind generation plant to bank up to 2.5 MWh of power at a time. That is enough power to supply 250 homes for a day. Each Battery Electric Storage System (BESS) is tied to an inverter, and it can either feed the grid or pull from it depending on efficiency needs at the moment.
The project is being done in tandem with Wykes Engineering, which works to develop innovations in green tech. Part of this innovation is a racking system in which batteries removed from I-Paces are slotted right into the racks that they'll inhabit as battery storage systems as they're removed.
These kinds of second-life storage systems have tons of potential, maybe exceeding 200 Gigawatt hours by 2030, as the first major wave of EVs falls off the road. JLR is supplying Wykes with 90 batteries to start, enough for 7.5 MWh of power, which can power 750 homes for a day. Vehicles lose their peak battery efficiency at 70-80%, but because these BESS units aren't limited by the space and weight of a vehicle, they can stack up a bunch of depreciated batteries and still eke out tons of power from what's left.
EVs will require new solutions to decommission, as the batteries are loaded with difficult-to-recycle toxic elements. Solutions like this allow every bit of life to be used up in the battery, creating a circular recycling economy. Once the batteries are depreciated as BESS units, they will be fully recycled, having used all of their potential.
As more electric Land Rover products are on the way, along with the full electrification of Jaguar from the 2025 model year, it's critical to come up with solutions like this, including designing battery units for second life before they're installed in a vehicle, before the inventory of JLR second-life batteries stacks up. Green tech has many levels beyond just buying an EV, and JLR's collaboration here is a step towards thinking deeper into the future.
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