Posted on 09/02/2022 in Electric & Electronic Building & Construction Fire Safety 2021
Dirk Long, EPRI

Dirk Long, EPRI (Electric Power Research Institute), shared the ESA (Energy Storage Association) target of 100 GW of battery storage in the US electrical grid by 2030, to support grid resilience and roll-out of renewable production (PV, wind) and emphasised that safety is key to achieving this objective. EPRI has already identified in its data base 42 incidents in battery storage installations, and the rate is accelerating with further installations. EPRI has carried out in-depth analysis of ten incidents, to define actions to reduce risk of incidents and to improve mitigation and fire service intervention. EPRI has developed a Battery Storage Fire Safety Roadmap (here), identifying 22 areas for investigation, covering explosion risk, design, technology and response.
Although the battery cells pose specific risks (explosion, thermal runaway …), fire risk is also related to many other components in the energy storage system. Fire performance of materials in and around the battery units is important in limiting fire spread in case of failure of one or more battery units. Cables and electrical systems in the storage system must resist fire ignition, in order to prevent electrical incidents leading to battery fires.

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