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Sandvik eyes second-life BESS for miners, to deploy prototype at Glencore

Image: Sandvik

Mining company Sandvik has initiated a pilot to deploy a second-life battery energy storage system (BESS) from retired Sandvik BEVs at Glencore, the two companies announced. The company aims to deploy the prototype BESS at a Glencore asset in 2025, with plans to launch a commercialized solution in 2026.

In a release, Sandvik said the BESS would be constructed "as an industrial 20-foot container holding 128 Sandvik battery modules" and having a nominal energy of around 1MWh. The container would include Sandvik systems for battery management and monitoring as well as systems for energy management and safety features for fire detection and prevention.

At Glencore, the BESS is expected to support mine services such as lighting and light EV charging. However, Sandvik will also study other use cases during the pilot, such as power shifting, peak shaving and arbitrage.

Sandvik also announced ECO STOR AS, a leading second-life energy storage system provider, as the company's technology partner in the project. ECO STOR will use its BESS expertise to develop the solution with modules recovered from Sandvik BEVs that have been retired from mobile mining applications.

Ville Laine, vice president of batteries and chargers at Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, said in a statement: "Due to early adoption of our battery systems in mines around the world, thousands of modules will reach the end of their first life over the next few years."

"These modules still hold as much as 70 percent of their original energy storage capacity when they reach the end of their optimal use in a mining loader or truck. Utilizing this remaining capacity in a stationary energy storage solution is a win-win, providing both environmental and economic benefits. We can as much as double the useful life of our batteries and optimize their full lifecycle," Laine added.

Alvaro Baeza, Glencore's decarbonization manager for copper assets, said openness and collaboration among industry partners was crucial to finding solutions for electrification. "Circularity and recycling are at the core of our business model and we look forward to working with Sandvik on this project that is well aligned with both transition challenges and our business focus," Baeza said. 

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