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Partnership gives EV batteries a second life

50 trial units will be placed in the homes of customers who already have solar panels installed

The partnership reduces the cost of a Powervault smart battery unit by 30 per cent
The partnership reduces the cost of a Powervault smart battery unit by 30 per cent

Powervault and Renault have announced a partnership to re-use electric vehicle (EV) batteries in home energy storage units. It will reduce the cost of a Powervault smart battery unit by 30 per cent and Powervault hopes it will bring home energy storage in the UK to the tipping point of mass-market roll-out.


Powervault is placing 50 trial units, powered by second life batteries provided by Renault, in the homes of customers who already have solar panels installed. The 12-month trial will explore the technical performance of second life batteries as well as customer reaction to home energy storage to help develop a roll-out strategy for the mass-market.


It will start in July and be run with eligible customers of M&S Energy, plus social housing tenants and schools in the South East.


“The collaboration we are announcing today with these two household name brands – Renault and M&S – is an important milestone on our journey towards achieving mainstream adoption of home energy storage,” said Joe Warren, managing director of Powervault.


Powervault is an innovative home battery system, which enables homeowners to live smarter by increasing their ability to store and use the solar energy freely-generated from their own solar panels. Powervault units can also automatically charge using low cost, off-peak energy from the grid.


The Powervault system sits at the heart of the smart home and the optimisation of energy usage within it. As well as reducing the cost of production of a Powervault, the use of second life batteries will also optimise the life-cycle of the Renault batteries before they are recycled.


As the leader in electric vehicles in Europe, Renault contributes to the energy transition through the re-use of its EV batteries for stationary energy storage. The batteries used in electric vehicles usually have a lifetime of 8 to 10 years. However, there is still plenty of useful life in these batteries for stationary applications; giving the batteries an additional life before they are recycled.


Within a Powervault home battery system, Renault batteries are estimated to have up to 10 years of additional useful life. Second life battery packs are removed from the electric vehicles, unpacked and graded before Powervault make them into smaller battery packs for their application.

“The second life use not only gives additional life to electric vehicle batteries before they are recycled, but also allow consumers to save money. It’s a win-win-win: for EV owners, home-owners and the planet,” said Nicolas Schottey, programme director, EV batteries and infrastructures at Renault.


Jonathan Hazeldine, head of M&S Energy, commented: “We know M&S customers share our vision of caring for our planet and building a more sustainable future. At M&S Energy, the biggest impact we can have on this is by sourcing energy responsibly and by helping our customers use it as efficiently as possible.


“With the Powervault trial, we now have a great opportunity to help our customers reduce their impact, and ultimately their energy bills, by understanding how we can make smart energy storage work for them.”


The units in the trial will be divided between the homes of M&S Energy customers, plus Hyde residents, as well as social housing tenants and schools in the Royal Borough of Greenwich, via Solarcentury.


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