LEAF Batteries Ten Years After

  Although the lithium-ion battery packs for the Nissan LEAF are engineered to be long-lived, still having approximately 70% of their storage capacity after 10 years, Nissan North America (NNA) is looking ahead, trying to figure out what to do with those batteries when they’re no longer auto-appropriate.

 

Although the lithium-ion battery packs for the Nissan LEAF are engineered to be long-lived, still having approximately 70% of their storage capacity after 10 years, Nissan North America (NNA) is looking ahead, trying to figure out what to do with those batteries when they’re no longer auto-appropriate.

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To that end, today they announced that they’re working with ABB, 4R Energy, and Sumitomo Corp. of America to evaluate and test the battery packs for residential and commercial applications for energy storage, as well as for helping balance the grid, but with an initial emphasis on the former rather than the latter.

According to Ken Srebnik, senior manager, NNA corporate planning, a LEAF battery pack is rated at 24 kWh. And Gary Rackliffe, head of ABB’s North American Smart Grid business, says that they’re going to be creating packages that would provide anywhere from say 25 kW up to a megawatt. (Part of the initial testing will be determining the necessary packaging for these systems.)

One of the applications being assessed is providing backup power in the case of an outage. Rackliffe says that outages average from 45 minutes to two hours in duration. A 50-kWh supply is sufficient to provide 15 average homes with electricity for two hours.

All of which is to say that it won’t take entire fleets of 10-year-old LEAFs to make a positive different on the grid.