Mixed opinions as Invinity CEO urges flow batteries to drop ‘redox’

Mixed opinions as Invinity CEO urges flow batteries to drop ‘redox’

Mixed opinions as Invinity CEO urges flow batteries to drop ‘redox’ 478 752 Energy Storage Journal
June 30, 2023: Invinity Energy Systems CEO Larry Zulch has called for ‘redox’ to be dropped from the flow batteries lexicon.

Zulch told the International Flow Battery Forum in Prague on June 27 it was time to drop the word in favour of only ‘vanadium flow batteries’ (VFBs) as the sector “enters the mainstream”.

“My hope is that this is something we can all agree on as the industry moves forward,” Zulch said.

However, a quick show of hands among the IFBF audience indicated mixed views — with one delegate telling Energy Storage Journal it was too soon to abandon redox in an attempt to give flow batteries an image makeover while the technology was still making its mark.

Attempts to do something similar with lead acid batteries failed five years ago when there was a move to drop the word “acid” from the nomenclature in a move to smarten up the image of the business.

Meanwhile, Zulch unveiled Invinity’s next-generation VFB project, ‘Mistral’, with the first customer shipments set to be made next year.

Mistral is suitable for large scale (+500MWh) wind, utility and solar installation projects based on the firm’s VS3 technology, which aims to bring down the levelized cost of ownership to under $50/MWh by 2026.

Invinity said on June 16 that its newly-expanded Vancouver facility is now able to produce up to 200MWh of VFBs annually and revealed that the company achieved nearly 31MWh of VFB orders as of the end of 2022.

The company builds its cell stacks in Vancouver, Scotland and China — and Zulch said the firm is among those seeking out financial support under the Inflation Reduction Act to build in the US.

In May 2022, Invinity announced the appointment of a corporate advisory team to expand its presence in US commercial and financial markets.

The company said EAS Advisors’ initial focus would be on increasing the level of US investor activity for Invinity — working with the company’s joint brokers Canaccord Genuity and VSA Capital.