Hinduja Group invests in UK second-life battery storage specialist


From pv magazine India

Mumbai-based Hinduja Group is one of the five new investors in UK-based Connected Energy, which develops commercial-scale stationary energy storage systems from used electric vehicle (EV) batteries. Hinduja Group, Caterpillar Venture Capital, Mercuria, OurCrowd, and Volvo Energy have together invested GBP 15 million ($18.4 million) in Connected Energy.

Connected Energy will use the funds to scale up its technology and operations in response to a growing energy storage market and increasing international availability of second-life batteries. The investment will also facilitate the in-house development of the company’s first large-scale M-STOR system of around 20 MW and 40 MWh. The system will feature a contracted “flow” of batteries from multiple original equipment manufacturers to provide long-term operational services to customers.

Connected Energy’s E-STOR technology is battery agnostic. It allows thousands of batteries with varying levels of degradation to be aggregated, controlled, and reused as one stationary energy storage system. It has 16 operational systems in the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands.

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According to Connected Energy CEO Matthew Lumsden, when batteries are around 25% degraded, they are often considered unsuitable for vehicles. However, they still have sufficient capacity for up to 10 years of more use in battery energy storage systems (BESS). Over its lifetime in operation, a second-life BESS can save an additional 450 tons per MWh of CO2 equivalent compared to using first-life lithium-ion batteries.

“To grow the second-life battery industry, strong pan-value chain relationships will be critical to Connected Energy as it expands, and the company’s new investors will complement this effort,” said Lumsden.

Connected Energy is backed by Engie New Ventures, Macquarie, and the Low Carbon Innovation Fund.

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