John Lindsay

Former telco exec praises the benefits of Redflow’s BMS for telecom companies

Former senior telecommunication executive John Lindsay, who is a Redflow director, has recorded a YouTube video to highlight the benefits of the Redflow BMS (Battery Management System) for telecommunication companies.

Telcos, including Optus in Australia, Vodafone and RCG in New Zealand and Mobax in South Africa, have deployed Redflow’s zinc-bromine flow batteries to provide energy storage for mobile phone towers in their respective countries.

John Lindsay, who was previously CTO of major telecommunication companies including Internode and iiNet Limited, said he was “quite impressed” by the way Redflow’s BMS solved problems that he used to experience managing batteries for those ISPs.

“In a former life … I was responsible for batteries at remote telecommunication facilities and managing them was quite difficult,” he said. 

“Unlike traditional electrochemical batteries, the Redflow Zinc-Bromine Module, or ZBM, has an on-board manager that decides whether each ZBM can be charged, discharged, put to sleep or woken up. Each group of ZBMs can have a Battery Management System, or BMS, which coordinates the operations of the ZBMs and communicates with the battery charger and load with an interface called CANBUS.

“The Redflow BMS connects to a Redflow Cloud service which securely monitors the status of every ZBM and securely allows the on-board software, or firmware, to be updated, just like your computer gets updated, so you ZBM will probably be smarter in the future.

“As a former telco and ISP Chief Technology Officer, the Redflow BMS really excites me because the power systems used for mobile base station and wireless ISP sites are usually very simple – a battery charger – and the equipment is often connected directly to the batteries. Sometimes, the first time you find a lithium or lead-acid battery cell has failed is when the equipment at the site stops working.”

John Lindsay said the Redflow BMS provided real-time insight into the performance of Redflow batteries, managing them like a fleet to optimise the system’s energy storage capacity and efficiency. “The Redflow BMS turns a set of ZBMs into an energy storage appliance,” he said.

Click below to view John Lindsay’s under-the-hood YouTube video introduction to the Redflow BMS. 

Redflow Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris with ZBM2 batteries

Redflow receives subsequent order of flow batteries for New Zealand’s RCG

Redflow Limited (ASX: RFX) has received a subsequent order for its ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries for deployment by New Zealand’s Rural Connectivity Group (RCG).

Redflow, which supplied an initial eight batteries for use by RCG in November 2019, has received a follow on order for an additional 10 batteries for installation at two new off-grid RCG telecommunications transmission towers in the North Island of New Zealand. Local RCG partner Switchboard Services has placed the order and will undertake ZBM2 installation works.

This repeat order follows the successful installation and commissioning of Redflow’s ZBM2 batteries at two RCG towers late last year.

Redflow Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris said this order for ZBM2 batteries at further RCG sites demonstrated the benefits that Redflow’s zinc-bromine flow battery technology delivered to telecommunications companies. “These benefits include long-life performance, heat-tolerance and theft-resistance,” he said.

“This builds on the interest and demand we have seen from Vodacom and Moropa in South Africa and Optus in Australia last year. We are extremely pleased to continue to solidify our product positioning as an energy storage technology of choice in the telecommunications market for off-grid and weak grid environments.”

About the RCG programme

The RCG programme is a venture between the New Zealand government and the three mobile network operators in New Zealand: Vodafone, Spark and 2degrees, to provide or enhance 4G mobile and wireless broadband coverage in New Zealand for off-grid and on-grid environments with a focus on rural areas and areas impacted by black-spots.  The Redflow ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow battery has been selected for use on off-grid sites and is particularly well suited to the requirements of this application. The batteries provide long duration run times for sites powered almost exclusively by PV solar panels, with a backup generator used in winter conditions.

The batteries provide 100% cycling capability each day to maximise the utilisation of the solar generation and that daily cycling capacity does not degrade with utilisation or at elevated temperatures up to 50ºC. The 10-year life of the Redflow ZBM2 with minimal maintenance makes for a cost-effective total-cost-of-ownership over the long haul.

About Redflow www.redflow.com

Redflow Limited, a publicly-listed Australian company (ASX: RFX), produces small 10kWh zinc-bromine flow batteries that tolerate daily hard work in harsh conditions. Marketed as ZCell and ZBM2, Redflow batteries are designed for high cycle-rate, long time-base stationary energy storage applications in the residential, commercial & industrial and telecommunications sectors, and are scalable from a single battery installation through to grid-scale deployments. Redflow batteries are sold, installed and maintained by an international network of energy system integrators. Redflow’s smart, self-protecting batteries offer unique advantages including secure remote management, 100 per cent daily depth of discharge, tolerance of high ambient temperatures, a simple recycling path, no propensity for thermal runaway and sustained energy delivery throughout their operating life.

Engineering News reports on the benefits of Redflow batteries for South African telecommunication towers

Engineering News, the leading source of news on South Africa’s industrial, mining, energy and services sectors, has reported on Redflow’s successful deployment of its zinc-bromine flow batteries at South African telecommunication towers. 

Engineering News describes how Redflow’s South African partners are rolling out Redflow’s modular and heat-tolerant 10 kWh batteries at 20 towers for telecommunications service provider Vodacom after extensive testing over the past six months.

Redflow Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris
Redflow Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris

Including an interview with Redflow managing director and CEO Tim Harris, the publication states the benefits of Redflow batteries for this energy storage application include their ability to:

  • repeatedly cycle from full charge to flat at a constant output rate without any impact on performance or ability to recharge
  • function in temperatures of up to 50 º Celsius without degradation of performance or the need for cooling.
  • reduce diesel costs to power the towers by as much as 66 per cent, with a proportional reduction in logistics, refuelling, service and maintenance costs, and
  • a lower theft risk, compared with other battery types.

Click here to read the full Engineering News report on Redflow. 

Vodacom deploys Redflow batteries to reduce theft and vandalism at South African mobile tower sites

One of Africa’s leading telecommunication companies Vodacom is deploying Redflow zinc-bromine flow batteries at mobile base stations in South Africa to reduce the vandalism and theft associated with lead-acid and lithium batteries. 

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), Redflow reported that Vodacom’s new use of Redflow ZBM2 batteries specifically to manage battery theft and vandalism is a significant commercial development for Redflow in the large African market. 

This development provides meaningful external validation by a major player in the African telco market of Redflow’s belief that the ZBM2 battery’s resistance to theft and vandalism is an important competitive advantage for the product in the large African market and other emerging economies. 

Continue reading “Vodacom deploys Redflow batteries to reduce theft and vandalism at South African mobile tower sites”

Vodafone uses Redflow batteries to store energy for remote telecom tower site in New Zealand

Zinc-bromine flow batteries from Redflow have stored and supplied more than 50 MWh (megawatt-hours) of renewable energy for a Vodafone telecommunications tower in New Zealand during the past three years.

Vodafone NZ’s Kauaeranga Valley tower site is located east of Thames by the Coromandel Forest Park in a remote part of New Zealand’s North Island, Sites such as the Kauaeranga Valley are so remote that it is unfeasible to lay or connect power cables. Alternative power sources, such as diesel generators, come with their own set of challenges including a second generator for redundancy, high maintenance costs and expensive and difficult diesel deliveries.

Vodafone New Zealand has met the challenge of bringing broadband connectivity to the remote site, where no grid power is available, by deploying a best-in-class green energy cell site, powered by Vertiv’s Hybrid Energy Storage System (HESS) with energy stored by Redflow batteries. The site, which contains five Redflow ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries, has improved mobile phone coverage and high-speed wireless broadband for thousands of locals and visitors in the region.

Rural Connectivity Group chooses Redflow for off-grid energy storage in New Zealand

The New Zealand Rural Connectivity Group (RCG) has chosen Redflow zinc-bromine flow batteries to store energy in off-grid telecommunication sites in remote rural locations. Commercial negotiations to establish a direct relationship between RCG and Redflow to purchase batteries are now underway.

Continue reading “Rural Connectivity Group chooses Redflow for off-grid energy storage in New Zealand”
Redflow Limited Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris

Redflow to deliver ZBM2 batteries for telco mobile phone tower sites in South Africa

Australian energy storage company Redflow Limited (ASX: RFX) has won an order to provide 68 ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries for at least 20 mobile phone tower sites in South Africa owned by one of Africa’s leading telecommunication companies.

The company, which provides telecommunication services to millions of customers across a number of African countries, decided to deploy Redflow batteries in its infrastructure after successfully testing ZBM2 batteries in a proof of concept trial. Deployment is scheduled to begin this month. Redflow expects to receive revenue from the order this calendar year, which has a commercial gross margin.

This latest sale extends the presence of Redflow batteries in South Africa after last year’s announcement that it had sold 32 zinc-bromine flow batteries to provide standby energy storage for remotely-located mobile phone towers in South Africa. Continue reading “Redflow to deliver ZBM2 batteries for telco mobile phone tower sites in South Africa”

Redflow extends footprint with leading South African telco

Redflow Limited (ASX:RFX) is pleased to announce an agreement with Mobax South Africa to provide batteries to test as a solution for mobile phone towers with a leading South African mobile network provider.

The agreement will see Redflow batteries deployed at existing mobile sites, with a particular focus on reducing the high cost of running diesel backup generators as well as being a less attractive target for theft. Redflow will supply as many as 10 ZBM2 batteries at its cost for the duration of the project, which aims to validate the technical and commercial benefits of the Redflow energy storage solution. The six-month project is expected to commence next month with defined success criteria that can be achieved earlier.

The ZBM2 batteries will be deployed and supported by Mobax South Africa, a new Redflow system integration partner. Mobax is part of Mobax Group, a leading field service provider of engineering, project and technical services to telecommunication network operators across southern Africa. Mobax Group, which has more than 350 field service engineers deployed across multiple countries, will be supported by Redflow’s long-time South African distributor SSS (Specialized Solar Systems). Continue reading “Redflow extends footprint with leading South African telco”

Redflow Limited Managing Director and CEO Tim Harris

Soul Energy partners with Redflow for infrastructure rollouts

Australian energy storage company Redflow Limited (ASX: RFX) has secured preferred supplier status with Soul Energy to provide batteries for the first of a number of expected infrastructure projects throughout Australasia.

Headquartered in New Zealand, Soul Energy is a green energy systems integrator providing technology infrastructure solutions in New Zealand, Australia and the South Pacific. Its services include design, manufacturing, installation, support and monitoring systems.

Partnering with Redflow has enabled Soul Energy to focus on key verticals, including telecommunications, utilities, agriculture and commercial as well as off-grid communities.

The total potential requirement for the first customer is as many as 200 Redflow batteries, likely to commence with an initial small order as early as June 2019. Following this customer awarding the head contract to Soul Energy, Redflow will finalise commercial battery supply terms which will include project staging and delivery schedules. The financial implications of the opportunity for Redflow will become apparent after these details are settled. Continue reading “Soul Energy partners with Redflow for infrastructure rollouts”

Redflow wins second South African telco battery sale

Australian energy storage company Redflow Limited (ASX: RFX) has won a follow-up sale of 32 zinc-bromine flow batteries to provide standby energy storage for mobile phone towers in South Africa.

This second sale follows an initial order last month for five batteries for use at mobile phone towers run by a leading South African telecommunication company. The towers are owned by a local company that is supported by the South African Government’s Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) affirmative action agenda.

Redflow CEO Tim Harris, who received the new order after a visit to South Africa last week, said it clearly demonstrated the technological and commercial viability of Redflow’s zinc-bromine flow batteries for telecommunication deployments. “Our batteries thrive on heat and hard work, which is what these sites in South Africa require.  Following yesterday’s Optus announcement, today’s new sale further highlights the value proposition that Redflow’s ZBM2 zinc-bromine flow batteries deliver to telecommunications companies, both in Australia and overseas,” he said.

Continue reading “Redflow wins second South African telco battery sale”