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  • Writer's pictureJohn Davis

Vanadium Batteries vs Lithium: What You Should Know

3D rendering of modular and portable white battery energy storage system installed on support construction

When comparing vanadium batteries vs. lithium, there are a number of different factors to consider—but in most cases, vanadium batteries come out ahead. While lithium batteries are ubiquitous in today’s world, we think vanadium batteries will become just as common in the near future. The substantial benefits of vanadium flow batteries outweigh the few negatives, particularly with StorEn Tech’s innovative design, which eliminates some of the traditional downsides of vanadium flow batteries. Here’s how the two types of batteries compare.

Vanadium Flow Batteries Run at 100% Capacity Forever

Lithium batteries decay and lose capacity over time, while vanadium batteries discharge at 100% throughout their entire lifetime. To account for this capacity loss, lithium batteries often have to be oversized at the time of installation, adding to the costs involved, but with a vanadium battery, the capacity you purchase is the capacity you need.

Lithium Batteries Create More Waste

Lithium has high disposal costs, but the vanadium electrolyte in vanadium batteries can be reused, so it retains its end-of-life value. In fact, vanadium batteries are known for having the easiest end-of-life processing. Combine this with the fact that lithium batteries need to be replaced more often and lose capacity over time, a vanadium flow battery is a greener alternative to lithium that creates far less waste.

Vanadium Battery Technology Continues to Improve

Millions of lithium batteries have been manufactured, but vanadium batteries are at the beginning of their development cycle, which means new innovations and improvements on this technology will continue into the foreseeable future. Once economies of scale kick in, we can anticipate cost reductions that make vanadium batteries attainable for both industrial needs and residential needs.

Vanadium Batteries Are Non-Flammable and Non-Explosive

Lithium batteries are both flammable and explosive. Vanadium is a safer alternative to lithium. A vanadium flow battery is water-based, and thus non-flammable and non-explosive. Indeed, vanadium flow batteries offer the highest level of safety compared to any other battery technology on the market today.

Lithium Batteries Have Less Flexibility

Vanadium flow batteries operate at a wider range of temperatures than lithium, so they can be installed both indoors and outdoors. In addition, vanadium flow batteries store energy in tanks, rather than cells. For industrial-scale projects, storing energy in tanks is much more efficient than in cells, and the bigger the tank, the lower the price per kilowatt hour.

Vanadium Batteries Last Longer

Our products have an average lifespan of 25 years or longer, with low annual maintenance. The typical lithium battery has a lifespan of 7 to 10 years. When a vanadium battery needs to be replaced, the vanadium electrolyte can be reused, so no fresh vanadium needs to be mined for the replacement.

Learn More About Vanadium Batteries vs. Lithium

If you’d like to learn more about the advantages of vanadium batteries when compared to lithium, contact us today or view our sustainable energy infographic.

This investment is speculative, illiquid, and involves a high degree of risk, including the possible loss of your entire investment.


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