25 Advance Rd, Toronto
Ontario, Canada M8Z 2S6

Concept

The Zn Reactor is an electrochemical cell with a distinctive structure:

  1. A charging section at the top where zinc metal is formed, absorbing energy.
  2. A discharging section at the bottom where zinc metal is dissolved, releasing energy.
  3. A section in the middle where zinc metal is stored.

Global patent protection is pursued. Patents were granted in the United States and China and are pending in more countries.

Operation

The electrochemical cell has a simple mechanical operation.

During charging zinc metal is electrochemically deposited in the electrodes in the charging section and falls, when wiped off from the electrodes, into the discharge section and the storage space below.

During discharging, the zinc in the discharging section is dissolved into the solution and is circulated back to the top of the charging section to be deposited back into metal again.

Charging and discharging cycles are created as the operation processes repeat.

Technology demonstration

e-Zn is currently leading an industrial consortium to conduct a project awarded by SDTC to demonstrate the storage of solar energy with a Zn Reactor system in an off-grid setting. It consists of 5kW solar panels and 1kW/24 hours of energy storage.

Consortium members include Canadian Solar, Broy Engineering and NewESolar.

About STDC

Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) is an arm's-length foundation created by the Government of Canada to support innovative and entrepreneurial clean technology projects.

Key Benefit

The Zn Reactor has low cost scalability for storage capacity based on three principles:

  1. Using zinc metal, which has high energy density and is inexpensive, as the energy bearing material.
  2. The zinc metal is detached from electrodes allowing the metal to be stored at a low cost unlike rechargeable batteries in which the energy bearing metal is fixed on the electrodes.
  3. The storage space is located within the same electrochemical cell as the charging and discharging electrodes enabling a simple operation and flexible capacity scaling.

Advantages over batteries

  • Storage capacity of Zn Reactor does not fade with time.
  • Zn Reactor can operate in a wide temperature range from - 45°C to 70°C without air conditioning.
  • Zn Reactor is fire resistant.