Toward High-Performance Redox Flow Batteries for Grid-Scale Energy Storage

Speaker: Dr. Ertan Agar - UMass Lowell, Lowell, MA
Date: Oct 29, 2021; Time: 2:30 PM Location: BPB 131

 Abstract: Redox flow batteries (RFBs) are an emerging energy storage technology that offers unique advantages for long-duration, grid-scale energy storage due to their ability to decouple energy and power ratings and the associated unprecedented scalability. Despite their promise, the relatively higher capital cost of RFBs limits their commercial viability and widespread adoption. One possible approach to reduce the capital cost is to improve the performance (i.e., increased energy and/or power density) of state-of-the-art systems for less material use, which consequently reduces cell costs. In this talk, an overview of the presenter’s most recent research toward high-performance RFBs will be given. In particular, the following three research projects will be summarized:

  1. Natural selection as a toolkit to overcome practical limitations in non-aqueous redox flow batteries (NRFB) – The performance characteristics of the mushroom inspired NRFB electrolyte using a suite of electrochemical and operando spectro-electrochemical data will be reported.
  2.  Overcoming the active material solubility limitation in RFBs via redox-targeting reactions – Recent efforts to reveal the fundamental principles of indirect redox-targeting reactions necessary to enable the rational design of high-energy density RFBs will be presented.
  3. Manufacturing of fabric-electrodes using machine learning based screening platforms – Critical factors underpinning electrode performance are elucidated. The structure-property-performance linkages of commercially available electrodes will be discussed.


Biographical Sketch: Dr. Ertan Agar is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the director of Electrochemical Energy Systems and Transport Laboratory (E2STL) at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Drexel University. His Ph.D. dissertation work was a combined experimental and modeling effort, which was aimed at understanding the species transport mechanisms governing capacity fade in vanadium redox flow batteries. Following his doctoral studies, Dr. Agar worked as a post-doctoral researcher in the Chemical Engineering Department at Case Western Reserve University. In this role, he worked on performance diagnostics of flowable slurry electrodes. His research interest includes design and diagnostics of flow-assisted electrochemical systems for energy and water applications (e.g., redox flow batteries, photoelectrochemical storage and water treatment cells), mass/charge transport phenomena, and electrochemical reaction kinetics. Dr. Agar is an active member of the Electrochemical Society and International Society of Electrochemistry. He also serves as the Faculty Lead for the UML I-Corps Site Program and the Regional Northeast I-Corps Hub.


Published: October 19, 2021

Categories: Past Seminars

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