The world’s largest sodium-ion battery has gone into operation in Qianjiang in China’s Hubei province. The developers of the energy storage system say that it can meet the daily electricity requirements of 12,000 households.

Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are used in everything from mobile phones and electric vehicles to grid-scale energy storage. But with lithium in high demand, sodium-ion batteries have emerged as a cheaper potential alternative energy storage solution. Now, China’s state-owned energy company Datang Group has connected the world’s largest sodium-ion battery to the power grid. The 50MW/100MWh energy storage system stores 10 times the amount of energy as the world’s next largest sodium-ion battery, which was connected to China’s southern power grid last year.

This marks the completion of the first phase of the Qianjiang project, which will eventually have twice its current storage capacity. The developers say that the current facility will help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 13,000 tons per year.