Form Energy, Inc. says it is developing a new class of multi-day energy storage systems, officially debuting the battery chemistry of its first commercial product and a $200 million Series D financing round led by steel and mining company’s ArcelorMittal’s XCarb innovation fund this week.
The electric grid faces this challenge in a solar + wind heavy world: how to manage the multi-day variability of renewable energy, even in periods of multi-day weather events, without sacrificing energy reliability or affordability.
Form Energy’s first commercial product is a rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion. Made from iron, a safe, cheap and abundant mineral, this front-of-the-meter battery can be used continuously over a multi-day period and will enable a reliable, secure, and fully renewable electric grid year-round.
“We conducted a broad review of available technologies and have reinvented the iron-air battery to optimize it for multi-day energy storage for the electric grid,” said Mateo Jaramillo, CEO and Co-founder of Form Energy. “With this technology, we are tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonization: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather or grid outages.”
Form Energy and ArcelorMittal are working jointly on the development of iron materials which ArcelorMittal would non-exclusively supply for Form’s battery systems. Form Energy intends to source the iron domestically and manufacture the battery systems near where they will be sited. Form Energy’s first project is with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy, located near the heart of the American Iron Range.
Greg Ludkovsky, Global Head of Research and Development at ArcelorMittal, said, “Form Energy is at the leading edge of developments in the long-duration, grid-scale battery storage space. The multi-day energy storage technology they have developed holds exciting potential to overcome the issue of intermittent supply of renewable energy. They are exactly the kind of ambitious and innovative company we are seeking to invest in through our XCarb innovation fund.”