Lithium Batteries: How Do You Prolong Their Life?
Does your facility develop Lithium-Ion batteries, or you use them as part of the finished product? From electronic device manufacturers to researchers, one of the primary targets is using or making batteries that can last longer. This brings us to the main question, “How do you prolong the life of Li-Ion batteries?” This post is a deeper look at Li-Ion batteries to help you understand how they work and tips for prolonging their life.
Li-Ion Batteries: A Deeper Look
A Li-Ion battery is a rechargeable type of battery that is mainly used in electric vehicles and portable electronic devices. Today, this category of batteries has also become very popular in aerospace. When fitted in a device, Lithium ions move from the negative to the positive electrode to discharge and vice versa when the battery is being charged.
It is very important to use a battery load tester to confirm their state of health before using them for research or in the devices you are manufacturing.
One of the main advantages of using Li-Ion batteries is their high energy density. Manufacturers also prefer them for their devices or research work because of low-self discharge and lack of memory effect.
Why Do Li-Ion Batteries Age?
As we have highlighted, Li-Ion batteries work through ion movements between two electrodes, just like a brain. From a theoretical point of view, the mechanism should work forever, but it does not.
The process of cycling, aging, and high temperatures pull down the performance of the Li-Ion batteries. This is why the life of lithium-ion batteries is pegged around 400 recharge/discharge cycles.
However, analyzing the life of a battery by counting the cycles is not enough because discharge might differ in depth. Indeed, there are no standards on what constitutes a cycle.
This is why lithium-ion battery testing should be aimed at establishing the state of health of the batteries. Mainly, you should focus on measuring the battery capacity, self-discharge, and internal resistances.
Tips for Prolonging the Life of Your Batteries
One of the recommended methods of prolonging the life of a Li-Ion battery is selecting the right voltage threshold depending on the type of work under consideration.
However, you need to appreciate that these batteries should not stay at high voltage, say around 4.2V/cell, over a long time. So, use the right battery testers to note when the charge reaches a maximum and then allow it to discharge to the natural levels.
This will be like relaxing muscles following a tough exercise outdoors. Here are other things you can do to extend the life of the battery:
- Avoid keeping the batteries that are fully charged at high temperatures.
- Try to keep the battery at lower charge voltages.
- Only allow partial discharges as opposed to full ones.
- When storing the batteries, discharge them to about 40%. Make sure to use a high-quality battery load tester to check the level of charge before storing the battery in a cool place.
Lithium-Ion batteries used in electronic devices, research facilities, and electric cars today are a huge improvement compared to the previous models.
The tips we have listed in this post can help you extend Li-Ion batteries’ life, which ultimately translates to higher value for money, a stronger brand, and more sales for manufacturers of consumer products.
Remember that the secret to getting more from your batteries is one – always use the right battery testers to understand their state of health at any moment.