Siam Cement Group (SCG) and Rondo Energy’s brick energy battery storage factory is ready to expand to a capacity of 90GWh per year, which the partners claim will be larger than any current battery manufacturing facility worldwide.
Mass production in the factory is already underway with a capacity of 2.4GWh per year presently online.
According to Rondo, a California-based energy solutions developer, refractory brick has been used for centuries for industrial heat storage and is made of Earth’s most abundant elements: oxygen, silicon and aluminium.
Rondo’s heat battery stores electric power as high-temperature heat in such refractory brick, they add, without using combustibles, critical minerals, toxics or liquids.
Thermal radiation warms the bricks at temperatures up to 1,500°C, storing heat. Thousands of tonnes of brick are heated directly by this thermal radiation, storing energy for hours or days, states Rondo.
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The battery storage solution was designed to integrate into existing facilities or new-builds, providing a solution for intermittency, when renewable energy isn’t available.
The refractory brick is produced for Siam Cement Group through their subsidiary, Thailand-based Siam Refractory Industry Company.
Announcing the expansion in a press release, Rondo CEO John O’Donnell commented on how “decarbonizing industrial heat is a trillion-dollar market requiring far more storage than the electric grid. The technology is here now. The demand is here now. This planned expansion means that the capacity is here now as well.”
Industry uses more energy than any other part of the world economy, and most industrial energy is used as heat.
According to Rondo, industrial heat, considered a ‘difficult to decarbonize’ area, consumes a quarter of total world energy and today releases a quarter of the world’s CO2.
The 90GWh of planned capacity from the battery factory will result in 12 million tonnes of CO2 savings annually, equivalent to removing over 4 million internal combustion engine vehicles from the road each year.