JV to meet needs of fast-developing energy storage market in Africa
SINGAPORE, February 9, 2022 – VFlowTech, a Singapore-based energy storage solutions provider manufacturing low-cost and efficient modular vanadium redox flow batteries, and Sing Fuels, a global energy trading company, today announced their new joint venture to meet the needs of the fast-developing energy storage market in Africa through sustainable microgrids. Under the new entity VFlowTech Africa, the two Singapore-headquartered companies will sign power purchase agreements with mobile network operators, mining companies, and other infrastructure owners to provide clean energy as a service, and will sell and distribute its Vanadium redox flow utility scale batteries in the Africa market.
VFlowTech Africa has set ambitious plans to accelerate the transition to renewable energy in the country. It will help deliver a net-zero future by delivering affordable and green energy solutions, which include the design and deployment of sustainable microgrids systems. By deploying its renewable energy battery storage systems, VFlowTech Africa will enable the storage of energy generated from variable or intermittent energy sources such as solar or wind. This energy is integrated in a standalone renewable microgrid to meet rural electrification needs.
Dr Avishek Kumar, Co-founder and CEO of VFlowTech, said: “Sustainable microgrids are the future of energy and a vital part of any fight against climate change. More importantly, improving access to electricity will have a positive impact on overall quality of life as it also affects access to technology and all forms of social and economic activities. This spans healthcare, education, agriculture and finance. Energy is one of the core challenges facing Africans today. Previously, access to electricity required massive investment and infrastructure but Vanadium flow technology addresses these issues thanks to the significantly low cost of ownership. Installing renewable microgrids is much more affordable than traditional energy infrastructure. Traditional battery technologies, such as lead-acid and lithium-ion, are not suitable for long-duration energy storage as they suffer from performance degradation and thermal run-away and pose serious safety issues.”
Vikash Dhanuka, CEO of Sing Fuels, said: “We wanted to deliver focused solutions that will benefit large communities as part of our decarbonization efforts. This partnership with VFlowTech to build renewable microgrid solutions allows us to offset the carbon emission of the maritime industry. It will also have a wider impact on improving the livelihoods of people as we drive rural electrification in Africa and help communities in the region become diesel-free.”
COVID’s financial impact has made basic electricity services unaffordable for 30 million more people, the majority located in Africa, according to the The Energy Progress Report* released in June 2021 by The International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA), the World Bank, and the World Health Organization (WHO). Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia had the biggest electricity access deficits. Despite 90 per cent of the world’s population having access to electricity, 759 million people live without electricity, nine out of 10 of them living in sub-Saharan Africa.
Microgrids are self-sufficient standalone power installations that provide electricity in remote areas that are not connected to a central grid or have unreliable electricity supply. By decentralizing electricity distribution with renewable microgrids, VFlowTech Africa will help generate and distribute electricity at an affordable rate in partnership with independent power producers (IPPs). This will mitigate rising costs of electricity or expensive infrastructure set-up costs for centralised power production.
VFlowTech’s batteries have an expected life span of 25 years and are proven to have one of the safest and most environmentally friendly battery technologies. Unlike lithium-ion and lead acid batteries, it is possible to scale the VFlowTech’s battery storage power (kW) and energy (kWh) based on the size of the battery stack and the volume of electrolyte stored in the tanks respectively. Other advantages include long-duration energy storage capabilities where the battery can work for infinite cycles with no capacity fade and electrolyte degradation. With VFlowTech’s unique IP on electrolyte additive, its vanadium redox flow batteries can operate at much wider temperatures than others.
Vida Technologies, part of Sing Fuels Group, will lead market expansion for VFlowTech Africa through strong partnership with major telecom operators in Africa (Airtel, Vodafone, MTN, Tigo, Telma, Econet, and many more) and independent power producers. VFlowTech will provide operational Microgrids to companies in Africa by providing 24/7 affordable and stable electricity. VFlowTech manufactures redox flow battery energy storage systems that offer a low-cost long-duration storage modular battery. VFlowTech currency has three key modular products: 5 kW/30 kWh, 10 kW/100 kWh, 100 kW/500 kWh systems, which can be scaled to multi MWh.
*The report provides a global dashboard of progress made by each country on the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7) : ensuring universal energy access to affordable and clean energy and tracks the expansion of infrastructure and technology upgrades for supplying modern and sustainable energy services for all in developing countries.
About VFlowTech Pte Ltd
VFlowTech is a Singapore-based energy storage solutions provider manufacturing low-cost and efficient modular vanadium redox flow batteries. VFlowTech’s long-term vision is to drive the world towards energy equity where everyone can access clean energy at affordable pricing. With an energy storage solution that has an expected life span of 25 years, VFlowTech has one of the safest and most environmentally friendly battery technologies. VFlowTech was incubated in the CleanTech lab of Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University, and benefits from unique IP arising from many years of intensive research at the university. VFlowTech batteries can store renewable energy over long-duration and are designed to address issues of performance degradation, thermal runaway, and product reliability on safety. www.vflowtech.com
About Sing Fuels
Sing Fuels is a global energy trading company that provides bunker trading, cargo trading and base oil trading services to ship owners, charterers, and other players in the shipping community. Founded and headquartered in Singapore, the company’s footprint spreads across Denmark, Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Greece, South Africa, Turkey, and the United States. www.singfuels.com