The Battery Basics: Understanding Lithium-Ion, Lead-Acid and More


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Types of Electric Car Batteries

How do the batteries work?
So we know how batteries are used in almost all the appliances we use in our daily lives and vehicles. Energy is converted to electricity with the chemical energy stored in a battery. The battery consists of a negative electrode cell, which has a surplus of electrons that are negatively charged subatomic particles.

Electrons flow from the negative to the positive when an electrical cable connects the two. Companies today have come up with a way to use the energy created by these moving electrons to run a motor. Since the vehicle’s engine is powered by it, it must deliver enough current to the motor over some time.

Types of electric batteries
• Lithium-ion Battery
• The nickel-metal hydride battery
• Lead-Acid Battery
• The solid-state battery
• The nickel-cadmium battery

Lithium-ion Battery: This is the most widely used electric car battery. The lithium-ion battery was developed in the early 90s and gradually established itself as the leading technology in the transportation and consumer electronics industry. You might already be familiar with it because smaller versions are used in portable devices like mobile phones and laptops.

Nickel-Metal Hydride (NIMH) Battery: Another variant of electric cars is hybrid cars which contain both battery-powered and fuel-powered engines. These cars mainly use NIMH batteries but are also compatible with BEV cars. These kinds of batteries do not require any external power source to charge.

Lead-Acid Battery: SLA, or lead-acid, is one of the oldest rechargeable batteries. The lead-acid battery is still found in many vehicles, those with both combustion and electric engines. Compared to NIMH or lithium batteries, these are much heavier and eventually lose capacity. However, automobile companies still use it mainly because of its cheap pricing.

The solid-state battery: The principle behind it consists of replacing the battery’s liquid electrolyte with a solid material that can take the form of a plastic polymer, compacted inorganic powders, or a mixture of the two. In theory, this technology is all positive: it makes it possible to increase energy density and stability while making temperature control more manageable.

The nickel-cadmium battery: If you used rechargeable batteries in the 90s, you’re already familiar with nickel-cadmium technology. “Ni-Cd” accumulators had plenty of advantages, with significant storage density and a lifespan of around 500 to 1,000 charging cycles. However, they did suffer from the memory effect, a physical phenomenon that sees the battery’s performance decline if it is subject to partial “charge-drain” cycles.

---- Time Stamp ---
00:00 - Introduction
01:05 - Types of Electric Batteries
01:40 - How a Battery Works?
02:51 - Lithium-ion Battery
04:23 - Working of Lithium-ion Battery
06:32 - Types of Lithium-ion Batteries
06:48 - Advantages & Disadvantages of Li-ion Batteries
07:54 - Nickel-Metal Hydride Battery
10:16 - Lead-acid Battery
12:04 - Solid-state Battery
13:37 - Nickel-Cadmium Battery
14:37 - Wrap Up

All images used in this video are under a creative commons license.

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