Finnish technology group Wärtsilä has signed a long-term partnership agreement with Hyundai Motor Group to utilise second-life EV batteries for use in the growing energy storage market.
Wärtsilä bills itself as a “global leader in smart technologies and complete lifecycle solutions for the marine and energy markets” and boasts 67 GW worth of installed power plants in 177 countries around the globe.
It also specialises in advanced energy storage technologies and software thanks to its July 2017 acquisition of US-based Greensmith Energy Management Systems, which has 180MW worth of energy storage powering over 50 sites globally.
The company’s new technology and commercial partnership with Hyundai Motor Group is designed to combine Hyundai’s recent expansion into the EV market with Wärtsilä’s growing energy business and will target both utility-scale and commercial applications which can suitably use second-life EV batteries.
“Energy storage is the logical next step in the after-market use of EV batteries,” said Dr. Youngcho Chi, Executive Vice President of Strategy & Technology Division and Chief Innovation Officer of Hyundai Motor Group.
“By repurposing resource-intensive products like EV batteries, we eliminate disposal costs and extend the value of the R&D investment that goes into manufacturing the technology.
“Hyundai is strengthening its leadership in clean technology and sustainability by participating in the new energy business.”
Both companies are banking on the continued accelerated growth of the energy storage market, which by 2025 could be utilising up to 29 GWh worth of second-life EV batteries that will be available, well up on the currently-available 10 GWh.
‘Wärtsilä and Hyundai hope to create a holistic global supply chain that combines battery manufacturing, EV applications, and second-life energy storage usage all the way through to eventual recycling of battery materials.
“Wärtsilä, through the capabilities and integration experience of Greensmith Energy, will develop a cleaner and more powerful approach to second-life battery applications for Hyundai Motor Group,” said Javier Cavada, President of Wärtsilä Energy Solutions.
“Our strategic partnership with Hyundai Motor Group represents the lifecycle vision Wärtsilä strives to deliver to our customers and partners around the world.
“Incorporating second-life EV batteries into our energy and integration business underscores our deep commitment to building sustainable societies with smart technologies.”