NAS battery enables megawatt-hour energy storage, realizes a stable supply of renewable energy

Published: 20 September 2020 - 1:05 p.m.
By: Baset Asaba

While efforts are increasing to realize renewable energy without the use of fossil fuels with carbon dioxide (CO2), providing stable energy storage and supply remains a bottleneck.

Although wind power and solar power are inexhaustible and clean resources, they are also considered to be unstable energy due to being affected by weather conditions. Therefore, to accelerate the spread of renewable energy solutions from wind and solar, the storage of large-scale electricity with unstable output is essential.

To that end, NGK INSULATORS, LTD. has developed a NAS battery that realizes a stable supply of renewable energy. By supplying the world's first fully proven energy storage system, especially for long duration application, NGK is aiming to contribute to reducing the global environmental load.

Features of the NAS battery

The NAS battery is the world's first proven storage battery for megawatt-hour energy storage based on NGK's unique advanced ceramic technology.

Featuring a large capacity, high energy density, and long life, it boasts a compact size (about one-third of lead batteries) and can supply high output power for a long time.

With its newest battery, NGK continues its tradition of developing reliable electric power-related equipment to the world to support stable provision of electric power.

With these features, the NAS battery has begun to attract global attention as a storage battery that helps to reduce peaks due to leveling power, stabilizes renewable energy, and contributes to power saving measures, energy cost reduction, and environmental load reduction.

How the ground-breaking technology inside the NAS battery was achieved

The NAS battery is a storage battery that uses sodium (Na) as the negative electrode sulfur (S) as the positive electrode, and fine ceramics as the electrolyte that separates both. It is a battery that utilizes a special ceramic (β-alumina) that allows only sodium ions to pass through, and is repeatedly charged and discharged through the chemical reaction of sulfur and sodium.

The basic principle of the NAS battery was developed by Ford Motor Company of America in 1967. Since this principle was developed, Ford and ABB in Germany have been working on electric vehicles, while GE in the United States has been working on energy storage.

NGK started the development of solid electrolytes for NAS batteries in collaboration with TEPCO in 1984. Accumulation of battery technology was aimed at expanding the energy business field by utilizing ceramic technology.

From 1989, the scope of research was expanded to the development of NAS batteries, and in 1990, NAS batteries for demonstration experiments were installed at the Tokyo Electric Power Kawasaki Substation.

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