The battery is a device that stores energy. It provides power to all the electronic units in the system. Charge storing is relatively uncomplicated but the limitations affect their operation. With growing battery technology, the declaration of new battery type often makes people wonder whether it offers high energy density, high charge, and discharge cycles? Every battery technology has its own pros and cons. It depends on the applications, that is where it is used. Sometimes size and density matter and sometimes the size and safety. The encounter of smaller technology and development of the same gives’way for new possibilities in battery technology.
“A battery by definition is a collection of cells. So the cell is a little can of chemicals. And the challenge is taking a very high-energy cell, and a large number of them, and combining them safely into a large battery.”—ELON MUSK
A battery pack has one or more cells and each cell has positive electrode, negative electrode and an electrode between the two electrodes. The properties such as amount of energy stored, power, discharge and charge cycles etc are impacted by the different materials and chemicals used in cells.
The battery market is divided based on battery type that is the primary battery(not-rechargeable) and secondary battery(rechargeable), and the battery technology [Lead-acid, Ni-Cd, NiMH, Li-ion, LiFePO4, and so on], and alsothe application [EV, HEV, PHEV]
Lead-Acid Batteries: They are evolving since its invention in 1859. Lead-acid batteries are used in Telecommunication, UPS and automobile industries. They have seen a great scale of development with respect to the automobile industry.Low maintenance costs, increase in demand for electric vehicles, and lower replacement cost is some of the drivers of lead-acid battery market. Major constraints for the drop in the market is its dependency on hazardous and restricted lead and the shift in the market towards Lithium-ion batteries. The lead-acid battery market is divided into gel battery, AGM battery, and flooded battery. Though the demand share of flooded batteries is anticipated to decrease,due to cost-effectiveness they are in high demand. There is gradual increase in demand share of AGM batteries.
Ni-Cd: In the section of portable battery applications alkaline rechargeable battery market has been expanded with Ni-Cd. They are more efficient than lead-acid batteries. The NI-Cd has low internal resistance and high current conducting properties, thus can be recharged quickly. Ni-Cd battery market is sinking due to the toxic characteristics in Cadmium which affect the environment and also because of other efficient battery technologies trending in the market.
NiMH: They are the upgraded version of Ni-Cd batteries. NiMH has higher energy density per volume and weight than Ni-Cd but at the cost of reduced cycle life. They are used in digital cameras, digital assistance, automotive batteries, cell phones, and other low-cost devices. Disadvantages are highly expensive and high self-discharge. The competition from other battery technologies such as lithium-ion is limiting the growth of NiMH battery market.
Lithium-ion: One of the reasons for the rapid growth in the development of Li-ion batteries is a huge acceptance of these batteries in cell phones, laptops, and computers. Out of all battery types Li-ion provides the highest density and thus electronic manufacturers prefer these over other battery technologies. The applications are categorized into automotive, medical, aerospace, military,consumer electronics and so on. They are also used in renewable energy areas for energy storage purposes. Other advantages such as long lifespan, low self-discharge, high charge, and discharge cycles have added to the growth of lithium-ion battery market
“Lithium makes a fine battery because it’s a scarily reactive metal. Pure lithium ignites on contact if it touches water – a flake of it would sizzle and fry on the water-rich cells of your skin. “—SAM KEAN
The subclass of the lithium-ion battery market is Lithium-Iron-Phosphate[LiFePO4], Lithium-Nickel-Manganese-Cobalt-Oxide [NMC], Lithium-Manganese-Oxide [LMO], Lithium-Nickel-Cobalt-Aluminium-Oxide [NCA], and Lithium-Cobalt-Oxide [LCO] batteries.
Lithium iron phosphate is used for high power applications. Due to the long cycle life, good thermal stability, upgraded safety, and tolerance features,constant voltage the market demand is increasing in consumer electronics and also in EV sectors.
Due to the high energy density, long life span, and thermal stability, the Lithium-Nickel-Manganese-Cobalt-Oxide [NMC] battery market is predicted to witness the highest growth rate. Researchers are working towards reducing the Cobalt content which would further increase the demand.
Lithium Cobalt Oxide [LCO] is one of the most widely used batteries in applications such as cell-phones, laptops, cameras and so on. Hence has increased the global lithium-ion market share.
One of the developing trends in battery technology is Lithium-Sulphur. Some of the aspects of Lithium Sulphur are sulfur is less expensive compared to Nickel, Aluminium, and Cobalt. They are expected to have high densities compared to other battery technologies.
With the rapid growth in the EV industry, the need for a power revolution is always on topic.
“If you want a product that’s thicker with a bigger battery, it’s also heavier, more costly, takes longer to charge. “–PHIL SCHILLER
“The depressing thing about battery technology is that it gets better, but it gets better slowly. There are a whole bunch of problems in materials science and chemistry that come in trying to make existing batteries better. “–NATHAN MYHRVOLD