Intersolar: Sony shows off its new rechargeable batteries

Sony Energy Devices Corporation presented the batteries at a booth it shared with sister company, Sony Chemicals, which supplies the solar cell manufacturing industry with metal ribbon connecting materials and encapsulation resin backsheets.

Sony Energy Devices, best known for its laptop computer batteries, is now taking orders for the new 1.2 kilowatt hour battery, which is an olivine-type lithium battery that uses iron phosphate as the cathode material.

It is a small battery considering the photovoltaics market, but several can be strung together in a series to support the energy requirement for a home or business, according to Sony. The battery management software to enable larger installations was also developed by the electronics company.

Several target markets are in view, including residential; backup power supply systems for mobile phone wireless base stations; recharging stations for EVs (electric vehicles); and for power leveling in large sized grid-connected power plants.

The battery has a lifespan of 10 years when charged/discharged once daily at room temperature (23°C). A Sony executive in the booth said that the boxes are ready to ship. It is currently producing 1,200 units a month.

According to a statement released by the company: "When used in conjunction with a control device, the module can be used as a backup power supply for data servers or mobile phone reception towers.

"Alternatively it can be an energy storage system for residential use. In addition, the module can be incorporated into recharging stations for electric vehicles as the technology for the built-in rechargeable olivine-type lithium-ion iron phosphate cells facilitates rapid recharging and high power output."

Check out the rest of Intersolar Europe’s new product launches.