The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi has set up an environment-friendly charging station on its campus. The device is powered by a Vanadium Redox Flow Battery (VRFB), and can be used to charge devices such as mobile phones, laptops, portable chargers, and tablets.
VRFB is a type of rechargeable flow battery that employs vanadium ions in different oxidation states to store energy. The second-generation prototype charging station was designed by the Sustainable Environergy Research Lab (SERL), under the guidance of Dr Anil Verma, Department of Chemical Engineering.
In an official press release, Dr Verma said, “The research team will collect the operational data of the developed prototype in the ambient and live conditions, so that appropriate changes in the design and operations can be incorporated in the next scaled-up version.”
Here are five things to know about the charging station:
1. VRFB can efficiently store and utilise renewable energy, which makes it non-polluting. Apart from that, it is also easily scalable and highly durable.
2. One of the major differences between a flow and conventional battery is the independent scaling of power and energy capacity.
3. During charging, the electrical charge is stored in the liquid electrolyte, and during discharging, the same stored energy is utilised.
4. The charging station can be operated for nine hours a day and is accessible not only to the IIT-D community, but also to the general public.
5. According to Dr Verma, this technology is suitable wherever diesel generators are used, owing to its long discharge time and low cost as compared to the conventional battery.