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Used electric car batteries could provide power to homes

US researchers are hoping to turn old electric vehicle batteries into local energy storage systems.

A team at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee are due to trial a new platform designed to enable used batteries that can still hold some charge to provide cost-effective backup energy to homes and businesses.

Researchers from ORNL, run by the US Department of Energy (DOE), will work with General Motors (GM) and ABB Group over the next year to study the performance of the platform, which contains five used Chevrolet Volt batteries and provides 25 kilowatts of power and 50 kilowatt-hours of energy.

‘With about one million lithium-ion batteries per year coming available from various automakers for the secondary market beginning in 2020, we see vast potential to supplement power for homes and businesses,’ said Dr Imre Gyuk, manager of the DOE’s Energy Storage Research Program.


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