University of Warwick creates portable energy storage system from used Jaguar batteries

Researchers at the University of Warwick have found a way to repurpose used EV batteries as small energy storage systems (ESS) for off-grid applications in developing countries or isolated communities. Each of the repurposed units has approximately 2 kWh of energy capacity, which researchers say is large enough to power a small shop, a farm holding, or multiple residential homes.

Jaguar Land Rover supplied batteries and components from the Jaguar I-PACE for the project. The Warwick researchers designed a new BMS and packaging to create an easily portable prototype ESS, which includes:

  • Standard low cost components for control, communication and safety functions
  • The ability to use different modules that can be interchanged without needing to recalibrate the whole BMS
  • Simplified control system for easy integration and deployment

The researchers note that while these partially depleted batteries show potential, there are still challenges to overcome, such as:

  • How to protect cells from over- charging and discharging
  • How to make the ESS compatible with used battery cells and modules from multiple manufacturers
  • How to keep costs low and maintenance easy

Professor James Marco, lead researcher on the project, said, “When an electric vehicle’s battery reaches the end of its useful life it is by no means massively depleted. It has simply reached the end of its useful life in a vehicle. It is generally accepted that an EV battery has reached end of life when its capacity drops to 80% of a fresh battery. While this is no longer enough to satisfy drivers, it remains immensely useful for anyone who seeks to use the battery in a static situation.”

Source: University of Warwick