A long-term research cooperation of the Košice universities – Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice (UPJŠ) and Technical University in Košice (TUKE) – with the Slovak company INO-HUB Energy has resulted in the successful completion of testing and production of a revolutionary flow battery, which will be in production from 2026. Representatives of the universities, Assoc. Prof. Andrea Straková Fedorková, PhD. (UPJŠ), Prof. Ján Slota, PhD. (TUKE), and the CEO of INO-HUB Energy, Rudolf Sihlovec, informed about it on Thursday, 18 January 2024, at a press conference at the Rector’s Office of UPJŠ in Košice.
The joint research of the Institute of Chemical Sciences of the Faculty of Science (UPJŠ), the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of TUKE and INO-HUB Energy has reached a successful finale. Despite the complexity of the project, the cooperation has already resulted in the final form of a fully functional 80 kWh flow battery in just 10 months of design, optimization, and testing. The battery is the first of its kind in Slovakia with a huge strategic importance not only domestically but also on a European scale. The battery was successfully installed in Kysucké Nové Mesto at the end of last year, where its production is planned to start in 2026. This step puts Slovakia on the map of competitive countries in the field due to the reduced dependence on imports of batteries produced in Asia.
Bringing the academic and the industrial environments together has a positive impact on the science and research as well as the students of the universities involved, who have already been engaged in the design, optimisation and testing of this battery. “It is very important for students to see the direct application of research results in practice. There is a difference in working with a small laboratory cell and a large industrial one. The collaboration of INO-HUB Energy experts is also beneficial, as their practical experience with industrial applications is indispensable in teaching and testing, and the students can also see the possibilities of employment in this segment. In the future, we also plan to introduce this type of battery into the teaching itself and to launch industrial doctorates in cooperation with INO-HUB Energy,” explained Assoc. Prof. Andrea Straková Fedorková, PhD, Vice-Dean for Science, Research and PhD studies at the UPJŠ Faculty of Science and Head of the RFB Technology Laboratory at the Institute of Chemical Sciences of the UPJŠ Faculty of Science. Thanks to the project, two scientific positions were created at the faculty and two students were actively involved in the project.