Lithium batteries and Lithium-Ion batteries
The lithium battery is the primary battery, and the lithium-ion battery is the secondary battery. Both lithium batteries and lithium-ion batteries are used in portable electronic devices. But there is a slight difference between the two. You cannot recharge the lithium batteries, but lithium-ion batteries you can. It forms a great advantage of using lithium-ion batteries. Another difference is that in lithium batteries the lithium is used in metallic form. On the other hand, lithium-ion batteries use lithium compounds.
Lithium batteries are made of four components. They are anode, cathode, electrolyte, and separator.
The cathode is the source of lithium ions. It helps to regulate the capacity and voltage of the battery. Anodes regulate the flow of electric current through an external circuit. It also acts as a storage for lithium ions after it is charged. The electrolyte between anode and cathode is made of salts, solvents, and additives. It acts as a channel. The separator separates the anode and cathode from each other.
Lithium batteries, mainly lithium-ion batteries, are extensively used in mobile phones, cameras, electric vehicles, and other electronic devices. The beginning of lithium batteries started in the 1970s. Throughout the 70s and 80s, many changes were made by scientists in the batteries. It was from the early 1990s when the two Japanese companies Sony and Asahi Kasei, started the mass production of lithium batteries.
DETAILED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
What is the lifespan of a lithium battery, and how to boost it?
Lithium batteries are chargeable. It generally lasts between 300 to 500 charge cycles.
There are many ways to increase the battery life of a lithium battery.
- It is crucial to note that you should avoid the complete discharge of the lithium battery.
- Charging your battery after using 20% or 30% can help to increase the battery life.
- Try not to charge the battery up to 100% for this select lower float voltage.
- A charger that uses minimum charge-current termination can also help to increase the battery life.
- Avoid charging your battery below zero degrees celsius. Temperature can also affect battery life.
- Avoid discharge below 2V or 2.5V. Deep discharge can damage the lithium battery.
What are the main characteristics of lithium batteries?
Lithium has few characteristics that make it a suitable material to use in a battery. Lithium is the lightest and most reactive metal. It also has the highest electrochemical potential. These batteries use lithium as ions and not in a metallic state. All these make the lithium battery ideal to use.
What is the best way to store and use lithium batteries safely?
Lithium batteries can catch fire, and it is a major drawback of it. There are a few measures, which can help to keep your lithium battery safe.
- To store your battery for a long time, remove it from the device.
- Do not keep it near anything that can easily catch fire.
- It is better to keep the batteries in a metal storage space.
- Temperatures form a crucial factor. Try to store the batteries at a temperature between five-degree celsius to twenty-degree celsius.
- If you are not using the battery, charge it every six months up to 50%.
- Buy the batteries from good manufacturers and dispose of the damaged batteries safely.
- Keep the batteries away from water, oxidizers, and acids.
- Do not keep the batteries under direct sunlight or any other hot places.
- If your battery is hot, let it cool before charging. And if your battery is hot after charging, then also let it cool before using it again.
- Do not damage the battery casing. Handle the batteries with extreme care.
- Also, if the battery smells while charging, produces excessive heat, changes shape, or if you notice any abnormality, remove it from charge.
What are the merits of using a lithium battery?
There are several merits of using the lithium battery they are as follows:
- Fast charging- The most crucial point and the reason for which the battery is so extensively used. The battery gets charged in very little time. It is ideal for our fast-paced life, and hence these batteries are preferred more.
- High energy- Lithium batteries have a high density of energy.
- Last longer- Lithium batteries last longer than others. It is capable of handling up to 2000 charge-discharge cycles.
- Small size- The size of these batteries is small and not bulky. They are also very light. For these reasons, it becomes easy to use on different small electronic gadgets. It is also convenient to carry such batteries while traveling.
- Self-discharge rate low- The self-discharge rate of lithium batteries is low compared to others. The self-discharge rate is about 1.5 to 3.0% per month.
What are the demerits of using a lithium battery?
Every object has its merits and demerits. Similarly, the advantages of using lithium batteries are known. Now let’s look into some of its demerits.
- Cannot tolerate heat- Lithium batteries cannot tolerate heat. High temperatures can destroy the cells of the lithium battery.
High production cost- The cost of production of the lithium battery is 40%
- Higher than nickel-metal hydride batteries.
- Chances of explosion- There are chances of lithium batteries exploding due to overheating or overcharging. It happens when the electrolyte decomposition forms gases. It causes the internal pressure of the cell to increase. Internal short circuits can also lead to the catching of fire.
- Restriction of transport- In the present times’ transportation of lithium batteries in large quantities are not allowed. More strict restrictions have been placed by the airlines.
- Deep discharge- When the lithium batteries face deep discharge, it stops working.
Which devices use lithium batteries?
Almost all mobile phones and other gadgets use lithium batteries in the present day. It was a Nobel Prize-winning invention. Here is the list of few things in which lithium batteries are used:
- Tesla cars
- Electric cars of Nissan, Toyota, and Chevrolet.
- DSLR Cameras of high brands like Nikon and Canon.
- These batteries are also used in boats.
- Pacemakers, hearing aids, and other equipment used in hospitals also use this battery.
- Fitbit and Apple watches use lithium batteries.
- Electric wheelchairs, power scooters also use it.
- All the Apple gadgets like the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, MacBook use lithium batteries.
- Solar energy storage also uses it.
Leaking of lithium battery
Though lithium batteries have many merits or advantages, governments also promote the use them. But the leaking of lithium batteries is a severe drawback. The battery leaks hundreds of harmful gases, which also includes carbon monoxide. These harmful gases are hazardous for both the environment and human health. It irritates when it comes in contact with the eyes, skin, and nose.
A close survey shows that not many people are aware of the hazards that the lithium battery causes. They are also unaware of the battery’s overheating, which can be dangerous as it can catch fire. They also don’t know the right way to take care of the battery.
The correct reason for the leaking of the harmful gases from the lithium batteries is not well known. However, since many popular brands use lithium batteries for their gadgets, they are trying to find out why and the solution for such hazards that lithium batteries cause. They can only protect the environment and the people from such harmful gases once they find out the reason for their release.
Extensive research in this field is carried out. According to many, a fully charged battery rather than a 50% charged battery mainly leaks such harmful gases. About 20,000 lithium batteries were heated in one such study, which caused an explosion and leaked many toxic gases. Thus many think that overheating is a major cause for the explosion and leaking of harmful gases. However, the researchers are trying their best to develop a technique to detect the reason for the emission of such harmful gases.
Lithium batteries are now being used extensively in our phones, laptops, vehicles, cameras, etc. The problem of the explosion of the batteries due to overheating and leaking of harmful gases is a huge problem. Since it is hazardous to both humans and the environment, this problem needs to be solved immediately. The researchers are trying their best. People can stay hopeful and positive. Soon they will come up with the best solution and make it safe for use in our daily life.