Our modern society highly depends on electric power. Electricity has increasingly become a primary need for all of us. It is quite hard to imagine our life without having access to battery-powered devices. Smartphones, laptops, tablets are just a few of the numerous items that use batteries to function. Ultimately, there are many types of cells of different sizes and capacities, each built to serve a specific purpose.
To put it simply, we have two main categories of batteries: non-rechargeable and rechargeable batteries. In the end, both types have the same utility. However, their properties, functionalities, and applications are different.
In this article, we will briefly introduce you to the rechargeable battery. At the same time, we will have a general overlook and a better understanding of how it works.
About Rechargeable Batteries
Before looking at how rechargeable batteries work, let us quickly know more about them and their components.
A rechargeable battery is a type of electrical battery that differs from its disposable counterpart because it can be charged and discharged multiple times. Common types of rechargeable batteries are nickel-cadmium (NiCd), nickel-metal hydride (NiMH), lead-acid, lithium-ion (Li-ion), lithium polymer rechargeable battery (LiPo), and the rechargeable alkaline batteries.
As previously mentioned, their size and capacity depend on the type of device or equipment required to be powered. The various application of rechargeable batteries ensures cost reduction, lighter weight, environmental protection, and increased lifetime. Among the different things powered by rechargeable batteries, we have the electric cars and light vehicles such as bicycle and motorized wheel chairs. Rechargeable batteries are also powering our everyday portable electronic devices and small appliances: cell phones, laptops, flashlights, and even medical tools.
Worth noticing that a battery is an electrochemical cell or series of cells formed by three main parts: two electrodes (the anode and the cathode), an electrolyte, and a diaphragm.
The two electrodes are respectively positive and negative charges and are both conductors of electricity. The electrolyte is an ionic conductor and the diaphragm separates the two electrodes. The anode is usually a metal or its alloy, while the cathode is generally metallic oxide or sulfide. Considering different types of rechargeable batteries, the electrolyte of lithium-ion battery mainly consists of lithium salt, solvent and additive, while Ni MH / NiCd battery is potassium hydroxide.
Rechargeable Batteries Working process
Rechargeable batteries store the energy through a reversible chemical reaction. When an electric current is applied to the batteries, the stored energy can be recharge once it has been depleted. The process of creating electricity involves electrochemical redox reactions: oxidation and reduction. When discharged, chemical energy is converted into electrical power. On the other hand, when charged, it converts the electrical energy into chemical energy and stores it.
The procedure sees a loss and gain of electrons. The ions move from a negative electrode to a positive one to generate electric current. When the rechargeable battery restores its power, the ions flow is restored, and the cycle can restart once again. Provided that the electrodes taking part in the reaction continue to repeat the same action accordingly, the rechargeable battery will continue to output current.
Rechargeable batteries have many advantages over the disposable version. Overall they have lower cost and reduced environmental impact. Due to their higher performance, they are vastly demanded on the market.
Our company BPI has been established in 2002. Since then, our team has been researching and developing new kinds of energy resources. We are currently specialized in 3 categories of rechargeable batteries: Lithium-polymer, Ni-MH batteries, pack batteries, and outdoor energy storage batteries.
Our highest commitment is to grant people a better life through the adoption of eco-friendly energy sources. If you are interested in removable energy, BPI is glad to answer your questions.