What should I know about lead acid batteries?


The lead battery/accumulator is designed for applications that require high currents. One needs to recharge lead acid batteries as much as possible, otherwise they become obsolete. The lead acid batteries are especially suitable for industrial applications. In general, one can speak of the following types of lead-acid batteries: start, traction and standby (classic), SLA / VRLA / AGM and gel batteries.

  • Start, traction and standby (classic):
    Start batteries should be able to deliver a large amount of power for a very short period of time (a few seconds). Traction batteries on the other hand are used in activities where deep discharges are involved and where the battery must be recharged every day. Standby batteries are designed for ‘no-break’ applications, and often serve as backup power. The disadvantage of these conventional lead acid batteries is that they work with liquid electrolyte. As a result, the batteries must be assembled in an upright position to avoid the risk of leakage. The system thus seems somewhat out of date.
  • AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat):
    These batteries are designed for applications in which a large standby current is required. The liquid electrolyte is packed in a special glass fibre separator. More than 99% of the generated gas is recombined. Therefore, the battery is maintenance free. The battery can be mounted in different positions (even upside down).
  • Gel batteries:
    In these types of batteries the electrolyte is provided in gel form, instead of liquid. The battery is especially suitable for cyclic applications and is able to provide higher currents compared to the AGM batteries. In addition, this battery type is completely maintenance free and can be stored both fully charged and discharged.
  • Spiral technology:
    A technique that can’t be left unnoticed is the spiral technology. This system is build upon the system of pure lead technology. Instead of using flat plates, as in conventional batteries, use is made of two lead plates that are wrapped in a spiral cell. The insulator is made of glass fibre in which the electrolyte is absorbed. Through the use of lead in combination with a special production technique a compact battery arises with a very high performance level.

Lead acid battery applications:

  • Classic: medical equipment, agricultural products, electronic forklifts.
  • AGM: aircrafts, defence systems. Electronic vehicles.
  • Gel: electric vehicles, alarm systems, medical equipment.
  • Spiral: aerospace, medical devices, critical applications.
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