If you need to know about batteries; you’ve come to the right place
Chinese flag点击这里访问我们的中文网站Chinese flag

battery

Japan invests in energy storage

Tue, 09/03/2013 - 11:49 -- Ruth Williams
Large-scale energy storage

Japanese battery development companies NGK Insulators and Sumitomo Electric Industries are working with the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry to find ways of driving down the costs of energy storage within the country.

Up to 75% of funding for the separate development projects will come from the government, for which 2.7 billion yen has been set aside this year. Funding will continue until 2018, however if progress is not satisfactory the companies may be asked to repay part of the subsidies.

The government is pushing energy storage development to bolster grid power and compensate for intermittent energy from renewable sources. Within the next seven years, the Japanese government wants to cut the installation cost of energy storage systems connected to renewable sources to below US$234 per kWh. 

At present, NGK, manufacturer of sodium-sulphur batteries, has production costs of 40 000 yen (US$402) per kWh, which the company is working to reduce. Sumitomo Electric of Osaka, developer of vanadium storage batteries, does not have a commercial product.

Novel lithium battery test from UL

Tue, 07/09/2013 - 00:00 -- Ruth Williams
Novel lithium battery test from UL

Underwriters Laboratory has developed a method of spotting internal short circuits in lithium-ion cells to improve standards relating to the batteries. Such a condition may have caused the notorious Boeing battery Dreamliner fires.

The Indentation Induced test is, according to Underwriter Laboratory (UL), a simple and repeatable way to induce internal short circuits to study battery behaviors when an internal short occurs.

UL says this approach is more rigorous than previous short circuit testing such as by nail penetration and will test cell’s reactions to a mechanical failure. While this is appropriate for impacts on the battery, such as vehicle crashes, it will still not be able to detect or protect cells against internal short circuits that occur due to causes other than mechanical means. It does test a cell for cathode dendritic growth, which many internal short circuits are attributed to.

In the Sustainable Energy Journal from the UL, the report titled ‘Lithium-ion Batteries. stated: “The Indentation Induced internal short circuit test was developed based on best-practice principles to provide a practical and simple method that is very suitable for battery safety standards. This test gives UL the ability to simulate how a lithium-ion cell behaves when subjected to an internal short circuit condition, which will help mitigate the hazards of ISCs and support the safe commercialisation of lithium-ion batteries.”

For the test, a cell is placed in a holder to prevent movement, an indenter presses the cell casing from above at a constant speed of 0.01 – 0.001mm/s. The test is suitable for cylindrical, pouch and prismatic cells at different states of charge or stages of aging and takes place in a temperature controlled chamber. As the indenter presses against the casing, the layers of anode, cathode and separators are deformed below the point of indentation. This heavy strain leads to a mechanical failure of the separator, which causes the electrodes to touch. This causes a drop in the open circuit voltage followed by a rapid increase in the cell’s surface temperature – up to 700oC –, which results in an explosive release of gases and fire.

The criteria for the test were: it must be able to generate a localised internal short circuit within a closed cell that would simulate the conditions similar to those found in the field failures of lithium-ion batteries; secondly it must be acceptable for battery safety standards. UL has partnered with NASA and Oak Ridge National Laboratories to develop test approaches.

Energetix gets new Pnu Power patent

Wed, 02/27/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

Energetix subsidiary Energetix Pnu Power has received a UK patent for an important method relating to the core technology within its compressed air uninterruptible power supply products.

The patent - titled 'Lubrication of Positive Displacement Expanders' - describes the method by which efficiency of the conversion of compressed air into electrical power can be optimised with minimal lubrication of mechanical components. Pnu Power produces back-up power solutions, using compressed air, for utility switching, telecommunications, data centres and other mission critical industrial operations.

Energetix says the grant of this patent provides additional protection to the company's core product platform and builds on the company's intellectual property portfolio relating to its Pnu Power technology.

The company has a core patent granted in 20 countries which protects its compressed air driven UPS system as well as two further patents providing additional protection. 

Cummins launches data centre website

Wed, 02/27/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

Cummins Power Generation has launched a website specifically focused on product and technical information to support the needs of its data centre customers.

In a statement, Cummins said the launch of http://cumminsdatapower.com reflected the need for information in one of the biggest growth segments in the world today – backup power for data centres.

Brent Ness, Global Data Centre Segment Leader for Cummins Power Generation, said: “We continually hear from data centre customers and from consulting engineers around the world that they want fast, easy access to information directly related to data centre product offerings,” said

“This website not only contains product information, it also includes technical bulletins, white papers and other information relevant to the application, operation and maintenance of the complete backup power system in data centres.” 

Second team announced for E-racing series

Wed, 02/27/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

China Racing has announced it will be taking part in the Formula E Championship electric vehicle race series in 2014. China Racing is the second of ten teams to be confirmed for the zero-emission race after UK-based Drayson Racing Technologies.

The teams will race on street circuits in ten cities across the world in electric cars. The cars for the inaugural year are being designed by McClaren, Spark Racing Technology and Dallara. All teams have the opportunity to use the customer car for the first year and encouraged to build their own cars for races in the following years. With support from Chinese automotive makers China Racing hopes to build a team car within three years.

(L-R): CEO Team China Racing – Steven Lu, Chairman Team China Racing - Yu Liu, FIA President - Jean Todt, First Secretary of the Chinese Embassy - Mr. Liang JianSheng, CEO Formula E Holdings - Alejandro Agag.

Alejandro Agag, Chief Executive Officer of Formula E Holdings said: “China has enormous potential for the expansion of electric vehicles as a tool to fight pollution in cities. We think the FIA Formula E Championship can be a powerful tool to make electric cars popular with the Chinese public, particularly the younger generations. Having a Chinese team with us in the Championship will be key to succeeding in that challenge.”

Porous Power separator reduces risk of thermal runaway

Wed, 02/27/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

Porous Power Technologies (PPT) has launched a line of ceramic-filled battery separators designed to improve the thermal stability and safety of the large-format lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles, flat-cell consumer electronics, and high-power applications.

Under heat, the ceramic-filled polymer separators fuse together, leaving a thin film of ceramic particles between the electrodes and reduce the likelihood of hard shorts that can lead to thermal runaway and cell failure.

The ceramic particles are evenly distributed throughout the PPT chemically inert PVDF polymer. The particles reside primarily in the pore walls, leaving a large and uniform open pore structure that enable ions to pass through with less resistance and less heat generation.

The separators will provide greater power in high-current applications as well as having increased thermal stability with less cell degradation. The design offers reduced separator shrinkage, extended cycle life, higher bake-out and operating temperatures, and improved puncture and abuse resistance.

Quick Cable Launches DC Power Products Catalogue

Wed, 02/27/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

Quick Cable Corporation has launched a targeted DC power programme including an online catalogue of products for stationary battery dealers, installers and OEM suppliers.

This is in response to the growing market for backup power in fields such as telecom centres, financial institutions, manufacturers and distribution centres requiring DC power from battery systems.

The new catalogue expands Quick Cable’s product portfolio of battery connectors, cables and accessories for DC power requirements.

The power programme brings in UL listed cable options up to 777 MCM, battery containment systems and additional chemical and maintenance products specific to the stationary battery market.

The battery containment systems have been designed around a flexible, model to make it easy to design a system based on battery rack dimensions using the Quick Cable online configuration tool.

BASF 2012 figures show growth in all sectors

Tue, 02/26/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

German chemical giant BASF has released its sales figures for 2012 showing growth across the company. The chemical segment overall sales figures grew 7% on 2011, the 2012 sales increased to €13.8billion. There was however a decline in EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) due to plant shut downs and lower margins.


The tables below show the full figures for 2012 compared to the previous year across the range of the company (bottom) as well as the fourth quarter sales figures (top).

Advances in charging for smart devices mean longer run times

Tue, 02/26/2013 - 17:36 -- Ruth Williams

Chinese portable power company Powerocks has an ever growing range of mobile phone power boosting accessories. The high capacity portable batteries provide additional power for mobile and tablet devices that are compatible with USB ports.

The lithium-ion batteries can be charged form a mains power supply and then provide several re-charges for smart phones and tablet devices. The slim-line design of iPhones and the like mean the battery cannot be swapped with a spare, it must be recharged, resulting in companies coming up with novel ways to help users re-charge when travelling or away from mains charging.

The range includes the Stone series of portable batteries that offer between 5800mAh and 7800mAh capacity, which provide an additional three times power for devices; The Magicstick is the size of an AA cell and offers 2600mAH power on the go for phone devices. 

The MagicstickThe ultimate in portable battery is built into the phone cover. The interestingly named Cheese Crystal is a protective case for the iPhone4 that has an 1800mAH lithium-ion battery incorporated in it to double potential battery life.

When charged, Powerocks range can power up to two devices, dependant on model, two or three times. The designs are complimentary to Apple style and show these chargers can be sleek and elegant but still pack a lot of power.

Pages

Subscribe to battery