Agenda, Attendee List, & Presentation files now available to Cleantech Council members in the library.

Renewable energy will succeed in tandem with electricity storage - from big-scale storage to daily–cycle and distributed storage where batteries are the go-to solution. This 1/2 day meeting reviews the innovation in energy storage - from management in software, to new chemistries, to battery recycling, and includes plenty of time for demos and networking over lunch.

  • Date:02/16/2023 08:30 AM
  • Location Qnovo in Milpitas, CA, USA (Map)
  • More Info:Members have the option of remote attendance.



Silicon Valley, California, February 17, 2023/Meeting Recap/ This month the Cleantech Council held our big meeting on Battery Tech. There are big changes taking place in battery technology this decade, as we see a rapid rise in large-scale batteries used in vehicles, home storage, commercial storage, and grid-scale plants. The surge in renewable energy, with its inconveniently-timed generation peaks is further stressing demand for new batteries, and new solutions. Renewable energy will succeed in tandem with electricity storage - both big-scale storage and smaller scale, daily–cycle, and distributed storage where batteries are still the go-to solution.

Stationary batteries have different requirements than automotive, with fewer constraints, which opens the door for different chemistries and formats. Different battery chemistries will also enable a diversification of battery materials, which should ease some of the supply constraints we would have if we all used today’s Li-Ion technology. And way down at the small end of the scale, IoT devices are proliferating, and new battery solutions will enable us to produce these with batteries that can be recharged wirelessly, and eventually disposed in the regular trash without toxic consequences.

Our meeting’s discussion, from the attendees and startup presenters, also took the conversation towards the timing and progress in EV battery re-use and recycling. The question was raised whether this could be profitable in the present, or whether it would be costly to recycle Li-Ion. Key points in this discussion were that

  • We’re just at the very beginning of the recycling industry, as early Nissan Leaf cars are just starting to fall out of service, releasing their batteries
  • Yes, Li-Ion batteries will have a second life, often in their existing casing and BMS, and without being stripped down to the individual cell. Startups in the room said they are already doing this profitably.
  • Delegates said they believed that when the time comes, it will be profitable to grind those batteries down, to renew the original minerals, and use them again in new batteries (although this has yet to be proven
  • There was a notion expressed that the world is not “using up” Lithium, nickel, cobalt, etc, but rather it will work a bit like currency: We are putting these minerals into a circular battery economy, where they will remain for a very long time, being cycled and recycled. We currently need to extract more because we don’t have enough “in circulation”, but that the need for these minerals is FINITE, which is in stark contrast to petroleum fuels, where they are consumed and replacement is needed in perpetuity.

A grand thank you go out to our host, Qnovo, who specialize in BMS solutions, to all our presenters and speakers, to our Question Panel, and to our three panelists for their contributions. Rapid-Fire presentations are available in the Members’ Library.