Not only electric cars, but also energy storage systems face raw material problems. This could be significantly smaller thanks to CMBlue’s technology.
Germany wants to move away from fossil fuels: wind and solar in particular should cover 80 percent of our electricity consumption in the next seven years.
The problem: Wind power and solar systems, unlike conventional energy production in coal-fired power plants and oil refineries, literally depend on wind and weather. Storage options for Electricity is therefore a central factor in the energy transition.
A startup from Bavaria is benefiting from this: CMBlue Energy has developed an energy storage system with high capacities and made from natural raw materials. Now the startup has secured a multi-million investment – with the goal, as Handelsblatt reports, of going into series production by 2025.
Strabag from Austria is investing 100 million euros in the startup. The listed construction company wants to build standardized “warehouses for electricity” together with CMBlue.
CMBlu Energy was founded in Alzenau in Bavaria (18,000 inhabitants) in 2014. Founder Peter Geigle is still CEO of the company today. His company has developed the so-called “solid flow battery”. The capacities of this battery are scalable up to the gigawatt hour range. The battery is made of natural materials – so it does not contain rare earths or lithium. This means they should be cheaper, safer and more sustainable than the most common storage variant to date: lithium-ion batteries.
CMBlu’s energy storage is said to be cheaper, safer and more ecological than lithium-ion batteries
CMBlu now has more than 190 employees in Germany and the USA, of which, according to the company, over 100 employees work in research and development. With the upcoming series production and market launch, we are on a clear growth path, according to the press release on the occasion of the Stabag investment. The 100 million will be invested primarily in production.
So far, the startup has been able to win over customers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Burgenland, Austria, as well as the energy giant Uniper. The company already has a second location in the USA. To date, however, CMBlu has only implemented pilot projects. In November 2023, a solid flow battery on Uniper’s power plant site in Hanau will be connected to the grid for the first time and tested during ongoing operation.
This is the first investment in a storage manufacturer for the construction giant Stabag. The group hopes to become a “full-range provider for energy services” in this way. Together with CMBlue Energy, they want to realize prefabricated electricity storage systems – “warehouses for electricity”.
Strabag looked at various energy storage technologies – what convinced the group was “the free availability of the basic materials” for the solid flow battery, said CEO Haselsteiner in the Handelsblatt.
Another Bavarian company wants to build one of the largest energy storage systems in Europe in Germany next year. Behind this is Eco Stor, a subsidiary of the Norwegian electricity company A Energie. A lithium-ion battery with 600 megawatt hours of storage capacity is to be built in Saxony-Anhalt by 2025 on an area the size of eight football fields.