Elcora Advanced Materials has acquired STE ERMAZONE.A.R.L, which includes ten (10) Vanadium licenses/concessions sites in Morocco. This strategic acquisition supports Elcora’s plan to enhance both its mining and energy storage solutions by adding additional markets related to battery technologies.
Elcora’s methodology in processing, along with mining and battery experience, creates an opportunity to leverage battery metals and minerals critical to energy storage applications. Vanadium’s role in the growing energy grid storage will increase over the coming years.
According to the latest BNEF forecast, energy storage installations around the world will multiply exponentially, from a modest 9GW/17GWh deployed as of 2018 to 1,095GW/2,850GWh by 2040. Furthermore, the Biden administration in the US has also pledged to deploy 1050-1570 gigawatts of solar power by 2050 and more than 30,000 megawatts of offshore wind in the United States by 2030. Therefore, the need for energy storage is crucial.
Rechargeable vanadium flow batteries (VFB) use vanadium ions in different oxidation states to store chemical energy currently used for grid energy storage attached to power plants and electrical grids. Roll out of large-scale vanadium flow batteries are underway across the globe, with many others being planned or under construction. Securing a strong supply of quality vanadium minerals will be a factor contributing to the growth of such energy storage solutions.
Elcora is devoted to unlocking the full potential of solar and wind through large-scale energy storage capacity. Like other minerals and metals needed for li-ion batteries, the thriving renewable industry will accelerate demand for high quality vanadium. Elcora will commence trial production to obtain sufficient material for a production process test run.
Vanadium flow battery are that it can offer almost unlimited energy capacity simply by using larger electrolyte storage tanks. VFBs can be left completely discharged for long periods with no ill effects. If the electrolytes are accidentally mixed, the battery suffers no permanent damage and is inherently safe and non-flammable.
Furthermore, VFBs exhibit very long cycle lives: most producers specify cycle durability above 15,000-20,000 charge/discharge cycles. These values are far beyond the cycle lives of solid-state batteries, which are usually in the order of 4,000-5,000 charge/discharge cycles.
Consequently, the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) of present VFB systems is typically in the order of a few tens of cents, much lower than the LCOEs of equivalent solid-state batteries and close to the targets of $0.05 stated by the US Department of Energy and the European Commission Strategic Energy Technology.