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Unlocking the potential of lead batteries

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Lead batteries Domestic battery manufacturing Energy storage Battery Council International Federal funding

The importance of lead batteries in the industry must never be overlooked as the news continues to center on lithium batteries.

The nation’s leaders must make sure they support the current, but frequently disregarded, domestic battery manufacturing sectors, such as lead batteries, as President Biden and Legislative leaders negotiate financial packages to increase American competitiveness by enhancing our energy storage leadership.

Unlocking the potential of lead batteries with R&D

A century of dedication: Battery Council International’s Century of Leadership in Energy Storage

The top North American industry association for battery producers and recyclers is called Battery Council International. We are dedicated to advancing legislation that recognizes the value of batteries made responsibly in terms of the environment, energy security, and economy.

We are reinvesting in our mission to educate the public and policymakers on the crucial role that batteries play in sustaining our everyday lives and the strength of America’s long-standing battery manufacturers as the association reaches its 100-year milestone second year.

Direct batteries: A well-known, long-lasting option

The workhorse lead battery, the industry’s most well-proven technology, continues to power the vast majority (99.7%) of the nearly 300 million vehicles of all types currently on the road, despite the recent headlines that lithium-ion batteries have garnered. They also serve as the foundation of the vital backup power in the US, which maintains the 24/7 availability of vital infrastructure like data centers, hospitals, and telecom networks.

Although lead-based batteries have been around for more than a century, they are not your grandfather’s car battery. Today’s next-generation batteries and continued research have the potential to enable ground-breaking improvements in battery performance while laying a solid and dependable foundation. Lead batteries could become even more potent, effective, and long-lasting with careful research and development.

However, federal funding has lagged; today, lithium-ion chemistries receive the majority of U.S. Department of Energy ( DOE ) battery funding. Although crucial to the total mix of battery chemistries, this leads to an imbalance in R and D and eliminates opportunities to maximize lead battery capabilities for applications in transportation and energy storage.

Empowering Energy Solutions: Lead Batteries Drive Domestic Manufacturing and Sustainability

Head batteries are ideally positioned to support new national priorities like energy storage for renewable energy and grid resilience by utilizing a fully developed and safe domestic industrial base.

Direct batteries also stay away from the issues with material sourcing that affect batteries that rely on rare-earth minerals. Within America, lead batteries go through their entire lifecycle, from production to recycling to the creation of innovative batteries using those recycled materials.

Over 90% of US forklift and industrial motive power batteries are supplied by the lead battery industry, according to statistics from the Battery Council International.

Additionally, in the US, more than 99% of end-of-life lead batteries are recycled, with recovered materials being used to replace fresh batteries, making them a long-lasting storage option. As internally recycled lead is used to make new batteries and lessen the effects of mining, this high recycling rate also ensures manufacturing stability.

The adaptability of lead batteries

Direct batteries are the foundation of large-format and low-voltage battery storage for all applications, including home energy storage, forklifts, data centers, and electrical storage. For decades, the private lead battery industry has been a leader in innovation, resulting in repeated increases in power, energy, and lifespan.

Direct batteries continue to be the main mechanical battery for internal combustion support thanks to innovations like enhanced flooded batteries and absorbed glass mats, which offer stronger starts and improved regenerative braking capabilities.

According to their demonstrated dependability, durability, and lower cost, lead batteries are also the most popular option for low-voltage and emergency system support systems for electric vehicles.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, more than 25% of US greenhouse gas emissions in 2021 came from the transportation industry. Advanced lead batteries can contribute yet more to lowering transportation emissions with consistent support by increasing the use of hybrid and electric vehicles and improving fuel efficiency. For instance, in the US, stop-start vehicles powered by lead batteries cut greenhouse gas emissions by almost ten million tons periodically.

Bi-polar lead batteries and other next-generation lead battery chemistries and configurations on the drawing board continue to hold promise. Head batteries could offer even better performance at lower costs than some lithium-ion applications with a larger national investment in research funding.

Direct batteries will play a significant role in our country’s energy storage infrastructure with the right investments, complementing the development of lithium-ion batteries. Lead batteries are well-positioned to meet short-term storage requirements by 2030 across transportation, defense, and the electric grid, according to the DOE’s Energy Storage Grand Challenge roadmap (ESGC).

Lead-based technologies can meet the DOE’s cost objectives for long-term energy storage at a lower cost than any other technology, according to recent ESGC Technology Strategy Assessments.

Similar to this, flow batteries that use inexpensive and plentiful materials are prepared to provide large-scale storage in a reliable and very robust manner. Instead of installing more batteries, flow batteries offer scaling capacity by just increasing the amount of electrolyte storage.

National energy independence through battery innovation must be prioritized by federal funding.

The production and innovation of US batteries will be improved as part of a plan. However, the current federal funding is improperly biased in favor of a small number of technologies, has n’t supported the US industry as it currently exists, and does not take into account the country’s current and future reliance on lead batteries across all industries.

The US can strengthen its position as a world leader in the production and recycling of lead batteries by making investments in Equitable. More than 121,000 Americans work immediately in the head battery sector across the nation. As part of the electrification transition, improved support for lead battery  will result in well-paying home jobs that produce and recycle batteries.

Taxpayers will get the most return on their investment from federal funding that fairly distributes support across all worthwhile battery technologies, including lead, flow, lithium-ion, and other technologies. The cutting-edge National lead battery industry can continue to power vehicles today and tomorrow and grow into new markets and applications with consistent support. However, without adequate national funding, their whole potential remains untapped.

Both agency administrators and budget negotiators should refrain from choosing winners and losers. A sensible “all of the above” approach will improve energy storage in the defense, utility, and automotive industries. For British workers, businesses, consumers, and the environment, renewed investment in lead battery will be beneficial. The future of lead batteries produced in America appears brighter than ever thanks to developing chemistries, recycling innovations, and cutting-edge manufacturing techniques.

To eliminate taxes on essential domestic battery manufacturing raw materials, Congress must also pass the USA Batteries Act (HR 1594). These taxes penalize private battery producers by putting them at a disadvantage in terms of competition. Additionally, these taxes make it harder for manufacturers to invest in which is essential to maintaining global competitiveness.

The private battery industries will be the foundation of the future.

In the upcoming decades, the demand for energy storage will keep increasing dramatically. We will need batteries of all kinds, including lead, lithium, flow, and undiscovered chemistries, to achieve energy independence. However, the dependable batteries that currently power America’s cars and grid each day are responsible for the viability of the country ‘ energy storage strategy.

We must start with the strong foundation we currently have in place: the cutting-edge businesses and employees who advance American lead-batter recycling and manufacturing every day. Their best days are ahead of them if they make the appropriate investments.

To maximize our investments in well-established private battery industries, Congress must support the equal, balanced funding required. By doing this, we can ensure British energy independence, create great jobs, and create a sustainable future that is supported by countless amazing homegrown innovations.

Matthew Boyle

Matthew Boyle is a distinguished Smart City Consultant, renowned for his expertise in IoT (Internet of Things) and cutting-edge urban technology solutions. With a deep understanding of Smart City initiatives, Matthew excels in leveraging IoT innovations to transform urban landscapes into efficient, sustainable, and connected environments. His strategic insights and hands-on experience in urban planning, data analytics, and IoT implementation make him a trusted expert in the field. Matthew Boyle is your go-to consultant for navigating the complex world of Smart Cities, ensuring seamless integration of IoT technologies, and unlocking the potential of data-driven urban solutions. With his guidance, your city can thrive in the digital age, enhancing quality of life and fostering a sustainable future.

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