WeView, a Shanghai-based new energy storage enterprise, announced on September 21 that it had completed several rounds of financing in six months, with a total amount exceeding 400 million yuan ($56.8 million). Investors include Gaorong Capital, Green Pine Capital, ZhenFund and other venture capital institutions.
The firm says that the fresh capital will be used for the technological innovation of zinc-iron liquid flow batteries, as well as for the construction and production of several GW-level factories. The goal is to greatly reduce the power consumption costs of liquid flow batteries and to improve the production capacity of energy storage batteries. It provides services for energy storage system integrators, new energy power plants, power grid operators, energy storage power stations and charging pile operators.
WeView, established in 2018, is an energy storage battery enterprise focusing on zinc-iron flow batteries, and its capacity of flow batteries is expected to exceed 1 GW next year.
On July 16 this year, the company also held a signing event for the new energy project of zinc-iron liquid flow batteries. It plans to invest a total of 10 billion yuan in five years, mainly building a 5GW factory, R&D base and electrolyte center. It is estimated that the annual output will be about 40 billion yuan, the annual profits and taxes generated will be about 1.2 billion yuan, and about 3,000 jobs will be created comprehensively.
Flow batteries have been receiving more and more attention of late. On August 27, Huawei Digital Power visited a company featuring liquid flow energy storage technology and discussed cooperation in the new energy industry.
In the past, lithium batteries were widely used in fields such as smartphones, household appliances and new energy vehicles. However, in terms of large-scale energy storage, lithium batteries have shown problems. Industry statistics show that in the past 10 years, there have been 32 combustion and explosion accidents in energy storage power stations across the world, of which 25 accidents are related to ternary lithium ion batteries.
Flow batteries store energy in aqueous electrolytes, and the energy conversion does not depend on solid electrodes, so there is almost no risk of combustion and explosion, which meets the safety requirements of large-scale energy storage. At the same time, this technical path can flexibly adjust and control the battery capacity, and easily expand capacity by increasing electrolytes, without going through complicated disassembly procedures. More importantly, raw materials for flow batteries are abundant in China, with a low price and high cost performance.
According to statistics by TrendForce, the global installed capacity of electrochemical energy storage is expected to be about 65GWh in 2022 and 1,160 GWh by 2030, showing a broad market space.