ESS to Set Up 500 MWh Iron Flow Battery Storage System for LEAG in Germany

The project is estimated to cost upwards of €200 million


ESS Tech, a manufacturer of long-duration energy storage systems, and Germany-based energy provider LEAG have partnered to construct a 50 MW/500 MWh iron flow battery system at the Boxberg power plant site in Germany.

Estimated to cost an initial €200 million (~$218 million), the project aims to accelerate the clean energy transition by combining renewable generation with long-duration energy storage (LDES) using ESS’s innovative iron flow battery technology.

The venture is expected to serve as a standard model for LEAG’s plan to deploy 2-3 GWh of storage, transforming its power plant locations.

The project anticipates additional financial support from investors and stakeholders and is scheduled for commissioning in 2027.

ESS’s iron-based LDES technology utilizes safe and sustainable battery chemistry, offering cost-effective utility-scale energy storage. ESS manufactures its systems near Portland, Oregon, in the U.S. and has already deployed them in commercial microgrid projects, with utility-scale initiatives underway in the U.S. and Australia.

Eric Dresselhuys, CEO of ESS, expressed enthusiasm for collaborating with LEAG, emphasizing its potential to establish a blueprint for utilities and communities worldwide transitioning from coal to clean, renewable energy. Integrating renewables with long-duration energy storage ensures the reliable delivery of clean energy and presents economic opportunities and a cleaner environment for Germany.

LEAG, which operates large-scale lignite mining and coal-fired generation in Eastern Germany, plans to transform the coal-dependent region into Germany’s Green Powerhouse. The company envisions the development of 7-14 GW of renewable generation, paired with 2-3 GWh of energy storage and 2 GW of green hydrogen production.

The company expects these technologies together to establish a net-zero-carbon baseload energy system. LEAG’s ambitious plans aim not only to replace baseload coal generation but also to utilize short-duration storage, LDES, and hydrogen for replacing natural gas for grid balancing.

ESS Tech posted a net loss of $77.97 million in 2022, a year-over-year improvement of 83.7% compared to $477.41 million in 2021.

The announced Energy Storage project funding came in at $2 billion in nine deals in the first quarter of 2023, compared to $749 million raised in seven deals in the last quarter of 2022.