Roisin Hickey recently joined the Energy Systems & Infrastructure team at Cenex as Assistant Technical Specialist, after completing her masters in Sustainable Energy Engineering at The University of Nottingham. She shares her first thoughts on our Battery Masterclass and their potential second-life uses as stationary energy storage systems.
As a new starter at Cenex, I was excited to attend my first LEVEL event and hear first-hand from experts in the field talk about innovative battery technologies and the future of the industry in a decarbonised society, even if, on my third day in the job, the ‘Cenex’ label on my name badge left me slightly exposed to questions I couldn’t answer.
LEVEL is a knowledge sharing and training organisation which delivers workshops and conferences covering all aspects of low emission transport technologies.
Recent events have included workshops on EV Charge Point Blockchain, Vehicle to Grid (V2G), and Mobility as a Service and the latest, Battery Technology Masterclass on 13th November, explored the developments in battery technology and their future impacts on the transport and energy sectors.
A keynote from Anna Wise, Innovate UK, preceded the day’s three main sessions: battery design and manufacturing, battery uses, and battery end of life.
My Cenex colleagues introduced each session with a technical background to each topic, followed by talks from experts in academia and industry on all parts of the life cycle of battery technology: from raw materials and the supply chain, to battery testing and applications, and battery recycling, second use applications and degradation.
The audience – representing a wide variety of sectors including local authority, universities, automotive and energy industries – provided diverse Q&A sessions and valuable opportunities to network.
All the presentations were interesting and insightful; a particular highlight was the insight from Eamonn Bell, GridBeyond, into grid storage applications and how the transport and energy sectors can intertwine.
It was encouraging to hear about the role of batteries and EVs in the future of grid services from an aggregator’s perspective.
I also really enjoyed the presentations on the options for batteries at the end of their life and how they can be used in a circular economy.
Nigel Dent, Connected Energy, spoke about repurposing old EV batteries and giving them a second life as stationary energy storage systems before recycling them.
These repurposed batteries can be used to store surplus electricity generated from renewables, which can then charge an EV when required, before using carbon intensive grid electricity.
This application could potentially double the useful lifetime of an EV battery, resulting in the use of fewer resources and lower costs for stationary energy storage systems, and an overall better environmental impact of the EV sector.
I can’t wait to attend the next LEVEL event (EV Charging Innovations on 4th December – book here) where I can hopefully learn even more from top experts in the industry and maybe even be able to answer some of your questions – look out for ‘Cenex’ on my badge!