Battery Energy Storage Scenario Analyses Using the Lithium-Ion Battery Resource Assessment (LIBRA) Model

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Meeting aggressive carbon emission goals will entail widespread deployment of renewable sources of electricity. Because these sources are variable, there is a need to develop scalable energy storage technologies. The U.S. Department of Energy is supporting efforts to increase U.S. manufacturing and recycling capabilities for LIBs and to decrease costs of stationary storage batteries. Many factors influence the domestic manufacturing and cost of stationary storage batteries, including availability of critical raw materials (lithium, cobalt, and nickel), competition from various demand sectors (consumer electronics, vehicles, and battery energy storage), resource recovery (recycling), government policies, and learning in the industry, among other factors. Understanding how these factors interact and identifying synergies and bottlenecks is important for developing effective strategies for the LIB stationary energy storage system. We developed the Lithium-Ion Battery Resource Analysis (LIBRA) model as a tool to help stakeholders better understand the following types of questions: What are the roles of R&D, industrial learning, and scaling of demand in lowering the cost of battery energy storage system production? How do the intersections between the EV and stationary storage sectors affect the battery supply chain? For various stationary storage and EV penetration scenarios, what volumes of critical materials might be required and what role can resource recovery play? What does expected demand for both EVs and stationary storage portend for mineral resources and overall mineral scarcity? The LIBRA model is developed using a System dynamics (SD) modeling approach to represent interactions across the segments of the battery materials supply chain. System dynamics models can capture the complex interactions and feedback between the various system components that influence supply and demand. The LIBRA model is comprised of several interacting modules that represent specific portions of the LIB supply chain. The model tracks the buildout of the domestic LIB industry over time (2020 - 2050) and in the context of competing demands for raw materials, recycling, and markets for LIBs. The LIBRA model represents major systemic feedback loops and delays across the supply chain. This report provides a complete documentation for the LIBRA model, including model assumptions, data, scenario analysis results, and sensitivity analysis of the model's input space.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages44
StatePublished - 2022

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A20-81875


  • batteries
  • energy storage
  • system dynamics


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