A small demonstration organic flow battery is prepared.

A new flow battery technology is projected to cost 60 percent less than today's standard flow batteries. The lower cost is due to the battery's active materials being inexpensive organic molecules, compared to the commodity metals used in today's flow batteries.

Lithium-ion batteries now make up about 70 percent of the world's working, grid-connected batteries; however, issues with performance, safety, and lifespan can limit the technology's use for stationary energy storage. Flow batteries, on the other hand, store their active chemicals separately until power is needed, greatly reducing safety concerns.

Plans are to make a larger version of the battery that can store up to 5 kilowatts of electricity, which could support the peak load of a typical U.S. home. Other ongoing efforts include improving the battery's cycling so it can retain more of its storage capacity longer.