News — Solar RSS

Will Safer Batteries Finally Take Over the Home Storage Market?

If the U.S. converts to a carbon-free grid, millions of homeowners may want to generate and store their own solar power. Companies are already jockeying over that potentially massive market — and the commercial contest revolves around safety. Tesla and LG Chem currently dominate the U.S. home battery market. Both use the lithium-nickel-manganese-cobalt-oxide (NMC) chemistry favored by the electric vehicle industry. In cars, the goal is to pack as much energy into as little space as possible. That comes with a tradeoff: the potential for cells to heat up and kick off a chain reaction that can end with fire and, in enclosed spaces, explosion. Such calamities are extremely rare. But in December, LG Chem (recently rebranded as LG Energy Solution) recalled an unknown number of battery packs after five "thermal...

Continue reading