Hydro-Québec launches energy storage subsidiary


Canada utility Hydro-Québec launches EVLO Energy Storage Inc as a subsidiary to design, sell and operate energy storage systems.

The EVLO systems use lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries and are aimed mainly for power producers, transmission providers and distributors, as well as the commercial and industrial markets for medium- and large-scale storage.

With a modular design, they can be scaled to meet a wide variety of needs. The systems also include power control and energy management software.

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“Energy storage will play a crucial role in the energy transition,” said Hydro-Québec president and CEO Sophie Brochu.

“We firmly believe that the know-how Québec has acquired with regard to batteries will help develop solar and wind power. Our products will also have useful applications in existing power grids, such as in managing consumption peaks.”

Hydro-Québec has a long history of R&D with more than 800 patents in the area of battery materials. The EVLO batteries have been tested on Hydro-Québec’s grid in applications from off-grid renewable power support to the Quaqtaq Inuit community in northern Québec to building energy management in a commercial building in Blainville.

EVLO batteries also are at the heart of a new neighbourhood microgrid in development in downtown Lac-Mégantic.

EVLO’s LFP batteries are considered much safer than conventional lithium-ion batteries, as their molecular structure provides intrinsic protection against thermal runaway. They also have a smaller environmental footprint, being made from naturally abundant materials and being recyclable using a process that allows almost all active materials to be recovered.

The first international order for EVLO is with Innergex énergie renouvelable inc. in the Tonnerre project in central France. This project involves the installation of a 9MWh storage system to provide grid support and frequency regulation in the transmission system operated by the national transmission provider, RTE. The system is slated for commissioning in 2021.