Quest : Flow Batteries : Ideas : Flow Batteries For Space Habitats

Flow Batteries might be suitable to store energy for mars/moon habitats for example while dust storms make solar power unaccesible.

Project Lab

Florian Lienert

Date: 30 June 2020 18:11
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Because Lithium-Ion batteries don't scale up well, Redox Flow Batteries are already beginning to be implemented in order to store energy for entire cities. Possibly one new source of funding for the research of these types of batteries could be the Space X Mission Mars. There is an evident need batteries on Mars for example during dust storms when solar power is not an option. Using these types of batteries would have certain advantages and disadvantages compared to standard Lithium-Ion batteries.


Advantages:

  • flexible layout, possibly making it suitable for mars habitats
  • long life cycles could reduce costs by cutting down on the number of supply flights necessary
  • quick response times
  • low maintenance, the crew could focus on other tasks
  • safer than many other alternatives

Disadvantages

  • high volume, transport to mars would probably cost more than with Li-Ion batteries
  • Redox Flow batteries often use Vanadium which is rare and increasing in price


If private industry or government institutions would get interested in Redox Flow Batteries and perform more research, innovation will lower prices and we would enjoy a plethora of benefits like a decrease in harmful emissions.


I did not find any information as to what types of batteries are planned to be taken to a potential mission to Mars on the Space X website and I haven't yet heard back from them since asking per mail.


I am obviously not an expert on these types of batteries, what do you think? Do the advantages outweight the cons or are they just not practical to fly up at an immense cost?



Florian Lienert



Edit: Obviously it would also be great publicity if a big company like Space X decided to use them


Edited: 30 June 2020 18:29

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