Lithium Ion Batteries for Solar Panel Systems

Blog | May 11th, 2018

Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) batteries have crept into every corner of our society. They power cameras and smartphones, plus every other portable gadget. Having said that, the Li-Ion solutions we’re about to call upon are more impressive than a laptop computer’s portable power supply. Indeed, lithium-ion batteries for solar panels are electrochemical luminaries, for they allow this sustainable industry to achieve its renewable energy potential. Let’s embrace the Li-Ion difference.

What Are Lithium-Ion Batteries? 

Unlike the lead-acid batteries that prop up many other industrial applications, these compact packages of energy-storing goodness are liquid-free. There are no spillage worries here, nor is there a need to “top-up” an acidic electrolyte. Because of that important feature, powerful batteries are now also portable batteries. Equipped with a metal-oxide cathode, a carbon anode, and a special electrolyte-separating mechanism, they operate by ionizing lithium atoms and sending them flying from cathode to anode during the batteries’ discharge cycle. That’s all very good, but why is this popular mobile battery type taking over solar panel systems?

Reaping Sustainable Energy 

Like a sun-kissed harvest, the panels absorb sunlight. Sticking with that metaphor, how does the system efficiently harvest the energy? Well, plain batteries store some of that electrical charge, but they’re not exactly the ideal solution. The answer is lithium-ion technology, a battery type that has a talent for storing large energy charges. They harvest the energy and then discharge that power efficiently. That’s a feature that a truly energy efficient solar panel system instantly benefits from as the sun makes its exit for the night. This primary benefit puts the spotlight solidly on this advanced energy storage solution, but are there more advantages locked inside this compact housing?

Introducing Prismatic Solar Cells 

Fundamentally efficient, prismatic lithium-ion power cells are on the move. They’re literally inside electric automobiles and moving those vehicles at speed. Likewise, this squat battery form factor is almost as large as a deep-cycle lead-acid unit, but it weighs far less than one of those back-breaking batteries. Still locked into that comparison, prismatic Li-Ions are capable of storing more energy, of absorbing higher currents, and they’re a tried-and-tested electronics power source. After all, the discharge curve of that heavy lead-acid package brick isn’t likely to stay constant, but a compact and light Li-Ion unit will consistently discharge as a flatline voltage curve.

The only advantage lesser batteries have over their lithium-ion siblings is cost. Even then, the advanced solar panel system power backup solution still pulls ahead, for they’re equipped with heaps of other benefits. Used in that energy efficient renewable power system, they require little maintenance, last for years, and they partner comfortably with solar system energy management circuits.

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