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Wind and solar power, for international, climate, and environmental reasons, are becoming more and more popular.
This variability in renewable energy sources creates issues in the management of grid electricity generation.
Batteries have chemicals inside and produce electricity by converting the chemical energy into electrical energy.
Positive ions (usually lithium) normally located at the anode, are driven from the anode through the separator, to the cathode building up a net positive charge.
During normal battery use, electrons are attracted to the cathode and flow the opposite way - from the anode.
As mentioned above, electricity generated by wind and sun is highly variable, both on an hourly basis and seasonally. As can be seen from the examples above, management of the grid with renewable generation takes on some new dimensions. The huge advantage of molten salt is that it can retain its heat for up to six hours when stored in specially designed storage tanks. Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) plants are designed to store electric power off peak when it is not in high demand and prices are low.
Wind and solar cycles are quite unpredictable and utility scale storage is very appealing to supplement these technologies. Spare electricity in off peak periods is used to compress air to about 750 psi and store it underground in sealed abandoned salt mines and other rock formations.
According to the Electric Power Research Institute's (EPRI's) energy storage expert, Rich Lordan, "CAES is going to be important." Pacific Gas & Electric is looking forward to participating in a huge 300 megawatt CAES project in Kern County, California. Due to normal variations in demand, there are small transient load fluctuations on the grid.
Flywheel based storage can be a significant help for managing transient fluctuations which will only increase as renewable sources are added to the grid. The only sound heard when standing inside the flywheel system is that of the fans used to cool the electronic equipment inside. Beacon Power, based in Tyngsboro, Mass., is the only grid level flywheel company with a production site. In the laboratory set up at the left, the liquid metal battery is inside the heavily insulated metal cylinder in the center and was kept at 700°C using external heat sources.
The big advantage of liquid metal batteries is that the current can be 10 times that of regular batteries making it fit for grid applications. As a endorsement of the importance of this research, the MIT project received a grant of about $7 million from the US Department of Energy and $4 million from the French oil company Total. The team has since created a firm called the Liquid Metal Battery Company (LMBC) in Cambridge, Mass. This concept offers an alternative solution where you don’t need to carry your battery charger or have to purchase a new battery.
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Rechargeable batteries are one of the most important components of portable and solar lights.
At the end of the article we have made an informational table comparing specifications of lithium-ion, lead acid, Ni-MH and Ni-Cd rechargeable batteries and different useful visual charts that illustrate the comparison of four battery type specifications (capacity, specific energy, self-discharge rate, voltage, prices and other) .
If you have any comments, questions or suggestions feel free to leave your message in the comment section under the article! Ni-Cd (also known as Ni-Cad) is a type of secondary batteries that we are using (or were using) in many of our everyday portable appliances including flood lighting. One of the main advantages of Ni-Cd battery is that it can maintain a steady voltage (1.2 volts) while discharging, even when it is close to being fully discharged. When not used, Ni-Cd battery will self-discharge about 10% of energy per month at normal temperatures, for example, if it’s left in a house on a shelf. Primarily, Ni-Cd batteries are used in smaller, portable electronic devices like remote controlled hobby toys, electric tools, TV and radio remote controls, flashlights, portable lights and others. Ni-Cd batteries are cheaper than Ni-MH and li-ion batteries, but more expensive than lead acid batteries. Ni-Cd batteries can be mostly found in low end portable and solar flood lights costing approx.
Ni-MH (also known as nickel-metal hydride battery) is a type of secondary (rechargeable) battery that is mainly used in many smaller, portable consumer electronics.
As mentioned, structure of Ni-MH battery is pretty similar to Ni-Cd battery, however, there are some differences in components used in Ni-MH batteries.
Ni-MH batteries replace older primary alkaline batteries and Ni-Cd batteries in small, portable consumer electronics. Ni-MH batteries have high capacity, more than two times higher than Ni-Cd and lead acid batteries. Ni-MH batteries (at least those made more recently) do not suffer from a memory effect that Ni-Cd batteries have.
Ni-MH batteries have very high self-discharge rate, up to 3 times higher than Ni-Cd batteries and even more times higher than li-ion and lead acid batteries. Ni-MH rechargeable batteries can be found in practically all range of solar flood lights form low end to high end lights, but mostly are used in low and mid-range lights. Lead acid battery is the oldest type of rechargeable battery and is also widely used today. Starting batteries are used in places, where short and powerful energy outputs are needed, such as in automotive engines. Deep cycle batteries are much better for long term usage and can handle a lot discharge cycles. There are lead acid batteries that are combination of both starting and deep cycle batteries and can provide high starting current and also can withstand deep cycles.
Voltage is produced in reaction between positive plate (lead oxide), negative plate (lead) and electrolyte (sulfuric acid). There are three types of lead acid batteries – Wet cell, Gel cell, AGM (Absorbed Glass Metal). Gel cell batteries use gel consistency electrolyte in opposite to liquid used in wet cell batteries. AGM or absorbent glass mat batteries uses glass microfiber mat separator between the battery plates.
Portable and solar flood lights are mostly equipped with one of the valve regulated lead acid batteries – gel cell or AGM. Lead acid battery is the oldest type of secondary (rechargeable) battery and thanks to its low manufacturing cost it is still widely used today. Before more than 40 years, the first sealed, valve regulated lead acid batteries were invented.
Cycle life of a deep cycle lead acid battery can vary dramatically based on depth of discharge and type of battery (wet cell, gel cell, AGM). The self-discharge rate of a lead acid battery depends on the storage temperature, same as with other types of rechargeable batteries. Lead acid batteries are mostly used as starter batteries in transportation, for example in cars and motorcycles. The popularity of lithium-Ion batteries is growing each year, however lead acid batteries are not going to be replaced by lithium-Ion batteries in the near future, because lead acid batteries are much cheaper to manufacture. Lead acid batteries are very cheap to manufacture and have one of the lowest cost per watt hour of rechargeable batteries. Lead acid batteries have very low self-discharge rate at about 5% a month and even lower for AGM batteries – approx. The main drawback of lead acid batteries are their low energy density, they have the lowest specific energy between Ni-Cd, Ni-MH and li-ion batteries.
Lead acid batteries are mostly used in high end portable flood lights and solar flood lights that require a lot of power, and can also be found in some mid-range flood lights. Valve regulated lead acid lights do not require practically any maintenance, which is useful for solar flood lights, and these batteries can be used in any orientation, which is good for portable flood lights. In a li-ion battery when discharging ions travel from negative electrode to positive and in reverse when charging.
Lithium cobalt oxide (LiCoO2) batteries are mostly used in common portable electronics like laptops, tablets, smartphones, digital cameras and other.
Lithium manganese oxide (LiMn2O4) batteries have high specific power and they are used for devices that require high power discharge, for example power tools and electric vehicles. Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries are used in variety of electronic products, starting from portable consumer electronics to electric vehicles.
The first experiments and developments of lithium battery started in early 20th century, however, the first lithium batteries for commercial purposes were made just in 1970s.
In 1996 the first lithium iron phosphate batteries were introduced that are being used in different portable applications, including portable lights. Today, lithium-ion batteries are used in variety of industries starting from consumer electronics (smartphones, laptops, tablets etc.) to automotive industry (electric car batteries). Lithium-ion batteries come in various shapes and sizes, starting from small, coin shaped cells to large battery packs used in electric vehicles. Based on the type of lithium-ion battery, charging and discharging rates, self-discharge and charging temperatures can vary significantly. Self-discharge rates of lithium-ion batteries can differ based on the type of the battery, but average rate is approximately 2-8% per month.
Lithium-ion batteries are one the most popular rechargeable batteries that are used in different types of electronic devices.
Each of lithium-ion battery types (li-cobalt, li-manganese, li-phosphate, NMC and other, newer technologies) has different features and advantages, which makes them more suited for certain applications.
Currently lithium-ion battery technology is improving and new materials are being used in these batteries to improve their capacity, life span, power and safety, so we are probably going to see more lithium-ion batteries replacing other types of batteries in larger industries like, for example lead acid batteries in automotive industry.
Lithium-ion batteries have high specific energy, which makes these batteries the best option for smaller portable devices like smartphones, laptops and others.
Li-phosphate batteries that are used in such applications as portable and solar lightings have long cycle life (up to 2000 cycles). Safety – li-phosphate batteries used in portable lighting have very good thermal and chemical stability. Li-ion battery can lose capacity and cycle life when stored in higher temperatures (over 30°C or 86°F) for longer period of time. Lithium-ion batteries, same as Ni-MH, are used in wide range of flood lights, starting from cheaper, low end lights up to powerful, high end flood lights, but can be mostly found in mid-range and high end portable and solar lamps.
The most common lithium-ion battery type used in portable and solar lights is lithium phosphate (LiFePO4).
Lithium-ion batteries still suffer from aging of the battery even if they are not being used, which means that the battery loses some of its capacity over time. For those, who do not like to read through lots of text we have created some visual materials comparing these four rechargeable battery types. Energy Paintball 9,6V NIMH:270mAh rechargeable battery has the best amperage for paintball.
In fact, we have the second largest number of patents among listed suppliers in mainland China.We also been offering complete solutions for LiFePO4 battery pack buyers for over six years. When renewables are only 2% of the supply as currently the case, variability is not a big problem.
A rechargeable battery is different from a disposable battery in that its chemicals can be refreshed, whereas in a throw away battery when the chemicals are used up, the battery is dead. Rechargeable batteries have a higher initial cost, but can be recharged very cheaply and used many times. Electrical energy can be stored in batteries during times when production from wind (or sun) exceeds consumption and the energy can be recovered when consumption exceeds production. How much battery capacity versus wind capacity do you need to make a significant difference in variability?
This means that power is still available for up to six hours after the sun goes low on the horizon - enough to cover the period of peak electrical demand. Then later, to return the compressed air back to electricity when demand and prices are high. PG&E needs the storage facility to manage the 4,500 megawatts of new wind power coming online in California in 2012 from the Tehachapi Pass Wind Project. When the load is equal to the power generated, the AC frequency is exactly 60 cycles per second (60 hertz).
Gas fired generators that are used for frequency regulation suffer a significant loss in efficiency and incur costs for fuel. A flywheel is a mechanical device that converts electrical energy into rotational kinetic energy.
The round trip efficiency of a flywheel system is about 85%; the other 15% is used to keep the flywheels turning. In the commercial version, the heat from the chemical reaction should be self sufficient to keep the temperature steady at 700°C so no external heating source will be necessary. The cost of the final product is expected to be less than $100 per kilo-watt hour (about the same cost as pumping water up a hill to be released later to spin a turbine - the cheapest conventional approach for large scale energy storage). In addition, liquid batteries are expected to have a long life, in contrast to today's batteries. The $11 million dollar research project was a statement about the potential for this technology. This royalty-free stock vector clip art image is available for download in a package that includes an EPS vector file and a high-resolution 300-dpi JPEG at 3000x2644 pixels. There are times where we have to recharge our rechargeable battery in a workplace or away from home, but we forget to carry the charger, what a bummer! You can create mechanical energy from the winding of an internal spring which later charges the battery on-to-go via its winding motion.
Currently there are four popular types of rechargeable batteries used in portable and solar lighting – Ni-Cd, Ni-MH, Lead acid and Lithium-ion. Ni-Cd batteries were by far the most popular type of batteries for smaller portable devices up till mid-1990s, when Ni-MH batteries took over the market.

Basically, as Ni-Cd batteries were intended to replace older, primary (non-rechargeable) alkaline batteries, they come in same sizes as those alkaline batteries, so they can be used in the same portable devices. Other type of batteries like lead acid will lose the voltage when they are getting closer to discharge.
However, if temperature in a place where battery is stored gets higher, the discharge rate per month can increase up to 20%.
Larger, specially made Ni-Cd batteries are used in larger electronic applications like emergency lighting and power work tools that requires large amount of power.
10% a month compared to Ni-MH 30% a month), they still have higher self-discharge rate than lead acid and li-ion batteries. If battery gets discharged to the same level for multiple times, it will start to act like that is the lowest discharge level of the battery, so Ni-Cd battery will lose some of its capacity.
These batteries must be taken to a special disposal station that specializes in cadmium disposal, so empty NiCad batteries get properly recycled. Ni-Cd batteries cost less than Ni-MH batteries, so flood lights with Ni-Cd batteries usually are few bucks cheaper than those powered with Ni-MH. Ni-Cd batteries provide significantly more charge and discharge cycles than Ni-MH batteries.
If you live in an area with very cold winters, where temperature often gets under -20°C (-4°F), flood lights with Ni-Cd batteries will be more stable and work better than Ni-MH batteries and li-ion batteries.
Development of memory effect can even more reduce the capacity of a Ni-Cd battery and decrease illumination time of a solar light.
Because of the toxic cadmium in Ni-Cd batteries, production and usage of these batteries have been restricted a lot in many countries, so you will see much less lamps using Ni-Cd than Ni-MH batteries.
Ni-MH battery is very similar to Ni-Cd battery with its form factor and components, but instead of toxic cadmium used in Ni-Cd batteries, Ni-MH batteries have hydrogen absorbing alloy as negative electrode or anode. This battery type was first patented in 1986 and became commercially available 3 years later in 1989.
This means that if you are going to leave fully charged Ni-MH battery on a shelf, after few months (depending on the capacity of the cell) battery will have lost most of its charge. They have much lower self-discharge rate, however these batteries also have lower capacity and their costs are little higher than regular Ni-MH cells. This means that they can be used practically in all the same electronic devices as both of those. They do not contain any toxic substances that can be bad for the environment like cadmium in Ni-Cd batteries or lead in lead acid batteries. Flood lights using Ni-MH batteries cost from 20 dollars up to 100 and more dollars, but the average price is approx. Ni-MH batteries have much higher energy density than Ni-Cd or lead acid batteries, which mean that they can store more energy in lighter and smaller battery, and for portable lights compactness of the fixture is an important factor. Ni-MH batteries do not develop a memory effect, so solar panel can charge battery to same rate for multiple times without any impacts to the capacity of the battery. While Ni-MH batteries cost more than Ni-Cd battery, they are still cheaper than li-ion batteries, so they are more preferred in low end and mi-range lights to reduce the price of the lighting fixture.
Ni-MH batteries have lower cycle life than Ni-Cd and li-ion batteries, which means that they will need to be replaced more frequently in solar lights than Ni-Cd or lithium batteries. Ni-MH batteries have risk of over-charging and over-discharging, so lighting fixture must have specific charging mechanism that can deal with these issues.
Ni-MH batteries have high self-discharge rate, which means that if you leave your portable light with Ni-MH batteries on a shelf, it is going to lose significant amount of energy each day, and can lose all its charge in two months. Deep cycle batteries are not capable of producing as high and quick power bursts as starting batteries, but because of their thicker plates, these batteries are much better for frequent discharging. Both absorbed glass metal and gel cell batteries later started to replace wet cell batteries in portable applications.
Lead acid battery, thanks to the low manufacturing costs, is still the best solution for car batteries and will continue to be for at least few years.
As deeper a lead acid battery is going to be discharged, as less cycle life it is going to provide. Large lead acid batteries are used as backup power supplies for objects that need a permanent power source like hospitals, telecommunication buildings and other places. Lead acid batteries are used to power flood lights and are much less used in other lamp types with much lower light output like spot lights.
The biggest advantage of lead acid batteries are their cheap manufacturing costs and high power they can produce, which is one of the main reasons, why many manufacturers chose to use lead acid batteries in their flood lights instead of lithium-ion batteries. The low self-discharge rate of lead acid battery is great plus for portable flood lights and emergency lighting.
Flood lights with lead acid batteries can be used in lower temperature range, over -30°C (-22°F) without any problems. Low energy density means that lighting fixtures using lead acid battery must be made in larger size or need to have an external battery in order to provide the same capacity as li-ion or Ni-MH batteries. The large size and weight of lead acid battery limits its usage in smaller portable and solar lights like, for example, solar spot lights. The low cycle life of lead acid battery means that you will need to change battery of your solar flood light after few years of usage. Older lithium batteries used lithium metal, but due to its instability and safety issues lithium ions were used instead. The most common types are Li-cobalt, Li-manganese, Li-phosphate and NMC (lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide).
Li-cobalt batteries have high specific energy density, which means that they can store more energy based on the mass of the battery.
These batteries have lower internal resistance, so they can charge and discharge at higher rates. Li-phosphate batteries are also the most common type of lithium-ion batteries used in portable flood lights. These were primary batteries (non-rechargeable) and metallic lithium was used as anode material instead of lithium ions. Since then the market of Li-ion batteries has developed and grown rapidly and today lithium-ion batteries provide much better performance and higher capacity. Lithium-ion battery is certainly the battery of the future and new materials and technologies of lithium-ion batteries are introduced each year that further improves capacity, power, life span and safety of these batteries. Lithium batteries are available in same common AAA and AA sizes, however, usually lithium-ion cells come in packs of many to form a larger battery (usually prismatic shaped) that can be used for different electric appliances, including portable lighting. When lithium-ion battery discharges, ions travel from negative to positive electrode, and in reverse direction when charging.
When battery gets charged in large heat, it can reduce batteries life span or even damage the battery. These rates can vary depending on different factors like age of the battery and temperature in which battery is stored. Again, life span heavily depends on the type of lithium-ion battery and conditions the battery is used.
Charging and discharging temperatures can vary depending on the type of li-ion battery, for example, li-phosphate batteries that are used in portable flood lights will have greater operation and charging temperature range than li-cobalt batteries used in laptops and smartphones. Thanks to their advantages like high energy density, light weight and low maintenance, lithium-ion batteries are superior than Ni-Cd, Ni-MH and Lead Acid batteries in multiple ways, which makes them preferred rechargeable battery type in most new consumer electronics, power tools and electric vehicle industries. For example, li-cobalt batteries, because of their capacity are used as laptop, smartphone, tablet, digital camera batteries, li-manganese batteries thanks to their high power are used in power tools such as drills, saws and others, li-phosphate batteries thanks to their long cycle life, wider operation temperature range and safety are used for electric vehicles as well as portable lighting, and NMC batteries, thanks to their overall performance are the preferred battery type for electric vehicles such as electric cars.
Growing popularity of electric car production and increasing demand for portable devices with longer battery life pushes research of lithium-ion batteries further, which results in development of new types of lithium-ion batteries each year.
Their energy density is notably higher than Ni-MH, twice as high as Ni-Cd and more than three times higher than lead acid batteries. Because of their large capacity, lithium-ion batteries can be made small enough for compact, portable and solar lights, but at the same time are also widely used in mid-range and high end lights. Li-ion batteries are practically maintenance free and do not develop any memory effect, which is especially useful for solar lights, as they can be installed and left working without need of any maintenance for a long time.
Li-phosphate is the most used lithium battery type for solar lighting, because it offers very good cycle life (over 2000 cycles) and is very safe to use even in higher and lower temperatures.
Still, li-ion batteries can provide the same or even better cycle life than Ni-MH and VRLA batteries. Low charging and operation temperatures (-20°C or -4°F and less) can impact cycle life of a lithium-ion battery. We have done some general comparison as well as gathered data from over 100 portable and solar lights from the most popular lighting manufacturers and compared different battery type usage in portable and solar lights. Customers especially enjoy our battery pack, battery management system and charger solution. The orange line is the contribution from a solar plant, peaking in the afternoon but not enough to satisfy the demand.
At the moment, there are three proven methods of storing electric energy on the scale of the grid - batteries, molten salt and compressed air. In this way, electricity production does not need to be drastically scaled up and down to meet momentary drops or to meet peak demand.
The answer depends on the conditions at an individual site but is believed to range between 10% and 20% of the wind system capacity. Because the trough power approach uses conventional steam turbines, it is easy for the system to integrate seamlessly into the electrical grid. Magnetic levitational bearings (no touching parts) are also used to reduce bearing friction.
Flywheels are not intended for long term storage, maximum storage time is about 15 minutes.
The advantages of flywheel based storage are a very fast response, they help manage renewable fluctuations, no CO2 emissions, lower operating costs than generators and batteries, and they free up one to three percent generating capacity. At capacity, the Stephentown plant provides approximately 10% of New York State’s typical daily demand for frequency regulation services.
The majority of former employees were rehired in addition to the purchase of the 20 megawatt Stephentown facility. During the charge process, the current separates both metals out of the electrolyte causing them to gravitate to the two electrodes leaving behind a thinner electrolyte. If we had charge battery, we could transform mechanical energy into electrical energy for recharging, even without a power source.
We have created this extensive article to help you understand the structure, specifications, types, advantages and disadvantages of these batteries.
They were used in many portable devices, from small computers, toys, photo and video devices, power tools and others.
Also, Ni-Cd batteries have low internal resistance, so they can charge and discharge a lot of power in very short period of time. It is recommended to discharge the Ni-Cd battery before storage and store it in a cool and dry place.
The closest rival to Ni-Cd batteries in low end flood lights are Ni-MH batteries, so it makes more sense comparing these two batteries, as li-ion and lead acid batteries are mostly used in mind high end flood lights. This means that in theory, Ni-Cd batteries in portable flood lights will need to be replaced after longer period of usage than Ni-MH batteries. In real life this means that Ni-Cd powered solar flood lights might not have enough capacity to store energy for full night illumination and light would stop working in a middle of the night.
Also, Ni-MH batteries have surpassed Ni-Cd batteries and now are used in a lot wider range of electrical appliances. Because of that manufacturers often combine multiple AA cells in special adapters called battery packs to increase their voltage.
What this means is that Ni-MH battery can hold more energy than same sized Ni-Cd or Lead acid battery.
Usually, a Ni-MH battery can lose from 4-20% of its charge on first day and afterwards self-discharge rate drops to about 1% per day.
High capacity of the battery is especially useful for solar flood lights, as larger capacity means longer work times with one charge.
However, replacement of these batteries usually is needed after more than 3 years of frequent usage. So lighting fixture batteries must be checked and charged after fixture has not been used for longer period of time. Also these plates are much thinner and have larger surface place so they can output higher current on discharge.
Gel cell batteries are sealed, so they can be used in all orientations and also they do not sulfate as much as wet cell batteries. AGM batteries are sealed and are considered maintenance free, so they do not require adding water.
He laid the groundwork for the first rechargeable batteries and discovered the principle that a battery can be recharged again by passing a reverse current through the battery.
For example, if valve regulated lead acid battery gets regularly discharged to 50% capacity it may provide approximately 1000 life cycles. For example, starting batteries can be fully discharged just few times, while some special valve-regulated deep cycle batteries can be fully discharged and provide even up to 1000 life cycles. Valve regulated lead acid batteries are used in portable appliances as backup power sources, for example for computers and servers. Lead acid batteries are used to power portable lights with up to thousand lumens and are often used to power light packs of 2, 4 or more lamps that are capable of producing multiple thousand lumen brightness and are often used in lighting systems.
If more capacity is needed, multiple batteries can be used together to provide longer work hours. Lead acid battery self-discharge only 2-5% a month, so flood lights with lead acid batteries can be stored unused for relatively long time.
This is an advantage for those, who live in areas with colder climate and need to use a flood light in winters. This is the main reason why you won’t find low end portable and solar flood lights with low light output powered by lead acid batteries.
Lithium-ion batteries offer number of advantages over other type of batteries such as high energy density and low maintenance, which makes them the best solution for widely used portable applications such as laptops, smartphones, digital cameras and others. Each of these Lithium-ion batteries uses different cathode materials, so each of them has different pros and cons.

However, they need special monitor systems to ensure proper safety, they have lower specific power and lithium-cobalt batteries have shorter life and cycle span than competing types of lithium-ion batteries.
Li-manganese batteries also are safer and can provide better life span than li-cobalt batteries. These batteries are safer than Li-cobalt and Li-manganese batteries, they have better life span and can produce high currents (more powerful than li-cobalt).
NMC batteries provide good specific power and high capacity, they have good life span and temperature tolerance, and these batteries have decent safety compared to li-cobalt batteries.
Metallic lithium is reactive material, so lithium metal batteries caused serious safety issues. Also an important factor in progression of lithium-ion battery is the reduction of its price.
Lithium-ion batteries used in portable devices such as laptops, smartphones and tablets come in many variations of shapes and sizes, and are specially designed for different manufacturers and products.
To charge a lithium-ion cell, a same polarity higher voltage gets applied to the battery, which makes the lithium ions move from positive to negative electrode.
The accepted temperature range for charging Li-ion battery depends on the type of the battery, but usually for consumer electronics it is from 0 to 45°C (32 to 113°F).
For example, li-cobalt batteries have almost two times shorter lifespan than li-phosphate batteries.
However, lithium-ion batteries have been around for a while and their potential is not limitless, so many companies and scientists are working to develop other battery concepts beyond li-ion batteries. But currently none of these experiments are close to being used in commercial applications and consumer electronics, so for few years now we are going to use lithium-ion as our primary rechargeable battery.
As lithium-ion batteries are used in such wide range of lights, they are directly competing with every other rechargeable battery type. This allows producing batteries with same capacity as other rechargeable batteries, but much more lighter and compact. 2-8% per month is an advantage for portable lights and emergency lighting, because lighting fixtures do not need to be recharged after they have been stored unused for a few months. Usage of a li-ion battery in a flood or spot light is more expensive then usage of other rechargeable batteries like Ni-MH or lead acid, and this results in a higher total price of the lighting fixture.
Lithium phosphate batteries have better low temperature tolerance and can work in temperatures below -20°C (-4°F) in opposite to other lithium-ion batteries. Don't worry about replacing batteries after every game and stop spending money on costly batteries. The light blue line is the load minus wind and solar illustrating that renewables can only be a part of the overall mix.
During the recharge process, electrons from a charger of the same polarity but with a higher voltage, are injected into the anode creating a reverse current from normal battery operation. Rechargeable batteries vary in size from AAA camera sized batteries to huge utility scale systems (see the box car size storage unit from A123 Systems at the top of this page). What time of day do you begin to let the battery discharge after being charged over night?
And because of its storage ability, the molten salt system can easily compensate for moving cloud cover and other weather phenomenon.
Wind is most powerful at night but needed most during the day, so wind power is ideal for this technology. The main disadvantage of a flywheel system is its short storage time limitation of about 15 minutes. When the charge period is complete, there remains a voltage differential between the two electrodes which can then drive a current through an external load generating electricity. LMBC announced that it raised $15 million in funding in its B round from Khosla Ventures, Bill Gates and Total.
Also, we have inspected and compared operation, prices, pros and cons of usage of each rechargeable battery in portable and solar lights. The increasing popularity of Ni-MH (and later Li-ion) batteries made Ni-Cd batteries lose their market share. Often Ni-Cd batteries are sold in packs of many (for example 4 battery pack), which have increased voltage and there are also other multi cell Ni-Cad batteries.
Low end flood lights are used in areas, where just “some sort of illumination” is needed, for example, front door light. But because of all advantages that Ni-MH battery could offer, it soon started to replace Ni-Cd batteries in portable consumer electronics and became the number one battery type used in these electronic devices. This rate applies to room and lower temperatures, however, if temperature in the place, where Ni-MH battery is stored gets higher (over 40°C or 104°F) self-discharge rate of the battery is going to be much higher. Ni-MH batteries are mostly used in such devices as cameras, toothbrushes, radio controlled hobby toys, portable lighting and also in larger industries like medicine and car building.
Ni-MH are much more frequently used in solar lights than Ni-Cd batteries, because they are more suited for lower voltage long duration discharge, instead of shorter time rapid discharge that Ni-Cd are capable of. While Ni-Cd batteries struggle to provide full night illumination for most solar lights even when they are equipped with a motion sensor, higher capacity Ni-MH lights can offer much longer work times and potentially could provide illumination from dusk till dawn. This problem is not applicable to solar lights that are usually set in one place and are working and charging batteries each day.
This means that battery can mostly be used in an upright position, there is possibility that electrolyte can spill, they may require maintenance after some time. AGM, same as gel batteries can be used in all orientations, so they can be used in portable devices. This invention has not changed till today and lead acid batteries are still widely used as car starter batteries. It is also easy to determine state of charge of lead acid battery using several simple methods, so you can always tell the charge state of your battery. Portable lead acid batteries can be found in many vehicles like electric bicycles and motorcycles.
The closest competitor to lead acid battery is lithium-ion battery, especially lithium phosphate. The good side on this is that Gel Cell and AGM batteries have much improved life cycles, which can even go up to 2000 cycles. For example, li-cobalt batteries are the most popular ones and are used in laptops, smartphones and similar devices, while li-phosphate batteries are used in electric vehicles and portable lighting. However, li-phosphate batteries have one of the lowest capacities (lower than li-manganese) of all lithium-ion battery types.
Because of this, scientists started to use non-metallic lithium ions to produce safer lithium batteries. The first Li-ion batteries were very expensive to manufacture, a lot more expensive than Ni-Cd or Ni-MH and lead acid batteries, but progression of technologies and materials used in these batteries allowed to improve their performance, while at the same time reducing manufacturing price of Li-ion batteries.
It takes about an hour to fully charge most common Li-ion batteries used in consumer electronics.
The lifespan of a lithium-ion battery will be longer, if the battery does not get fully discharged. The price of a portable or solar light with lithium-ion battery starts from 30 dollars and goes over multiple hundred dollars for powerful lighting systems. This is why lithium-ion batteries are used not only in high powered flood lights but also in smaller, portable lamps like spot lights.
However, the cost of low and mid-range lights with li-ion batteries is not very much higher than price of similar lights with Ni-MH batteries.
The one week of solar power chart at the left from Arizona illustrates very well the natural, but fairly predictable, variability of solar energy.
For a much more detailed discussion of wind and batteries see the Xcel Energy Wind-To-Battery Project.
Solar is best during the peak times, but excess solar power could be generated during one afternoon in the southwest, stored overnight, and then transferred to the east coast for the next day's peak along super transmission highways similar to interstate freeways. Operators monitoring the grid will either increase or decease standby power generators to compensate for these transient fluctuations. The amount of energy a flywheel can store is proportional to the weight of the flywheel, but also the square of the rotational speed. During discharge the two metals then recombine in the electrolyte enlarging the electrolyte with respect to the two electrodes.
Basically, Ni-Cd batteries can store much less energy in same weight battery than Ni-MH and li-ion batteries, but more energy than lead acid batteries, which have the lowest energy density from all of these rechargeable batteries. Low price is the main advantage of such flood lights and as these lights are not intended to produce a lot of lumens, Ni-Cd batteries are often used in low end portable lighting because of their low cost.
Also European Union Battery Directive restricted usage of Ni-Cd batteries in many electronic devices, because they contain toxic metal cadmium, and this allowed Ni-MH batteries to take Ni-Cd place in the market, as they have pretty similar features and form factor. However, today we are seeing that Lithium-ion batteries are more and more taking over these markets reducing the demand for Ni-MH batteries.
Ni-MH flood lights are mostly used in household areas, starting from decoration and front door lights, to garden lights, shed lights, patio lights, security lights and many more.
Wet cell batteries are mostly used as car starter batteries and their main advantage is low production cost. Gel cell same as AGM batteries cost significantly more than wet cell batteries so they are used in more specific applications.
AGM battery has longer lifespan, can produce higher discharge currents and is more resistant to lower temperatures. Which battery type is used in which high power flood light usually depends on the manufacturer views.
If the battery is left in an area with temperature of 40°C (104°F) and larger, the self-discharge rate can rise more than 10 times, meaning that the battery is going to self-discharge at rate of 15-20% a month. Li-ion batteries for portable lights and solar lights come with wide range of battery capacities, starting from 2Ah to 30Ah and more for high power lighting systems.
In high end flood lights and lighting systems, lead acid batteries are significantly cheaper to use than lithium-ion batteries, so many manufacturers are still preferring lead acid batteries over lithium-ion in such lights.
The power on the first, fifth, and sixth days indicate that there was some cloud cover on those days. Wind and solar power stations are like roads and bridges - once the original costs are paid for, the follow on maintenance costs are almost free as there are no fuel costs.
If this occurs the composite carbon cylinder can explode into many, many small pieces of very short lived flying hot ash.
Beacon Power received a $43 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy for the project. The CEO said that the company has passed the R&D stage and was moving into commercializing the technology for large-scale grid applications. The battery casing has been designed in two parts where one part contains a spiral spring and generator, the other part contains a rechargeable battery. Besides the growing popularity of Ni-MH batteries there were another thing that reduced consumption of Ni-Cd batteries in Europe – European Union Battery Directive.
Ni-Cd batteries can be found in such manufacturer solar lamps as Reusable Revolution, Sunforce, LampLust. A completely discharged cell can go into reverse polarity, which can damage the cell and cause problems in functionality of electrical device the cell is powering. Both gel cell and AGM batteries are often known as VRLA or valve regulated lead acid batteries. As mentioned above, AGM same as gel cell batteries are often called VRLA or valve regulated lead acid batteries.
However, currently lead acid batteries are more popular than li-ion batteries in high power flood light and lighting systems because of their lower costs. Portable and solar lights powered by lithium-ion batteries are manufactured by companies as eLEDing, Solar Goes Green, MicroSolar, Ivation, Lighting EVER, Solar Illuminations, Northen Twilight, Reusable Revolution, XEPA and others. Analysts can develop algorithms to shorten the discharge period depending on the amount of charge in the battery, but still surround the peak time period.
Doubling the weight doubles the stored energy, but doubling the speed quadruples the amount of energy that can be stored.
The loan covered 62.5 percent of the estimated $69 million needed to construct the plant.
Ni-Cd batteries use highly toxic metal cadmium, which is poisonous to humans and can cause damage to the environment.
They were widely used not only in portable consumer electronics, but also in much larger industries.
To increase the capacity of lead acid battery, multiple batteries can be connected together in parallel.
As lead acid batteries are mostly used in high end flood lights which price range start from approx.
What do you do when the wind is very strong and the electricity generated by the wind exceeds the carrying capacity of the grid?
Natural gas and coal were very cheap in the following years and it did not make economical sense to store cheap electricity.
The main problem with these Ni-Cd batteries is disposal of used batteries containing heavy metal cadmium.
The average cycle life is from 500 cycles on high capacity batteries to almost 3000 cycles on lower capacity batteries. To address this issue, EU Battery Directive has greatly restricted usage of these batteries in electronic devices.
But in recent years, usage of Ni-MH batteries has decreased significantly because of technological development and production growth of lithium-ion batteries.
Lights with Ni-MH batteries are produced by such manufacturers as Sunforce, Maxsa, Designers Edge, Solar Goes Green, All-Pro and others.
Lead acid batteries used in flood lights come with wide range of capacities and sizes, starting from 4Ah up to 50Ah and more.  Flood lights using lead acid batteries are manufactured by such companies as Maxsa, Concept Enterprises, Solar Illuminations, Reusable Revolution, Solar Goes Green and others. When the battery is full and the grid can accept only a limited amount of electricity, the excess needs to be dumped into the ground by the battery management system.

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Comments Rechargeable battery energy density

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