Michigan-based Our Next Energy announces LFP utility-scale battery

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Our Next Energy, Inc. (ONE), announced Aries Grid, a lithium iron phosphate (LFP) utility-scale battery system that can serve as long-duration energy storage.

Founded in 2020 by Apple Inc. veteran Mujeeb Ijaz, ONE was initially known for making batteries for electric vehicles. Earlier this month, ONE announced that it had raised $300 million to fund the first phase of a $1.6 billion U.S.-based battery cell gigafactory. Investors include Fifth Wall, Franklin Templeton, Temasek, and others. The company also received $220 million in grants from the state of Michigan, and Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Ventures was an early investor.

“Energy storage is the key to decarbonizing both mobility and the grid.” said Mujeeb Ijaz, CEO and founder of ONE. “With Aries Grid, ONE is servicing a market demand for safer and more sustainable utility-scale energy storage solutions that are, for the first time, cost competitive with fossil fuels, thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act.”

The Michigan factory, which is located in Van Buren Township, will begin production of the Aries Grid LFP cells in 2024, and the cells will be offered in 2-, 3- and 6-MWh options to support modular and scalable renewable energy storage.

The lithium iron energy storage system uses a LFP cathode chemistry, which is known as having a minimized fire risk when compared to traditional lithium-ion batteries. ONE also reports that LFP is more durable and has double the lifetime energy throughput of the nickel, cobalt and manganese (NCM) chemistries which make up most commercially available stationary energy storage systems in the United States.

With discharge times ranging from 4 to 12 hours, the company reports that the Aries Grid can create a renewable microgrid that provides 24×7 firm capacity baseload to power factories, data centers and communities.

“Aries Grid offers utilities a versatile grid asset while providing businesses with a tool to help decarbonize their supply chains,” said Dr. Deeana Ahmed, vice president of strategy, policy & sustainability of ONE. “With durable, sustainable, Michigan-built batteries, there is a real path forward to increasing renewable electricity across the U.S. and around the world.”

Since the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was signed into law in August, several battery manufacturers have announced plans to set up shop in the United States. Included in the IRA is over $60 billion for domestic manufacturing across the clean energy supply chain, which includes $30 billion in production tax credits to accelerate domestic manufacturing of solar panels, wind turbines, batteries, and critical minerals processing.

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