What Are the Pros and Cons of Lithium-Ion Batteries?

Electric batteries have changed how we power countless electrical devices, allowing for a portable solution for powered systems with the ability to be recharged. Batteries come in many shapes and sizes to cater towards differing needs, the lithium-ion battery in particular being one of the most advanced and popular types. Lithium-ion batteries contain various lithium ions and electrodes, both of which are separated by the anode and cathode of the battery, respectively. As the lithium ions push into the cathode through a micro-permeable separator, they will recombine with electrons and neutralize. As the lithium-ion battery operates, it will create a very high voltage and benefit a device with its ample charge storage in regard to mass and volume.

Across all applications, lithium-ion batteries may differ in the materials that are used as the electrode. The most popular option is to combine lithium cobalt oxide as the cathode with an anode such as graphite, and such combinations are common for the portable lithium-ion batteries found within mobile phones and laptops. For more intensive battery applications such as powering hybrid and electric automobiles, the combination materials will typically come in the form of lithium manganese oxide and lithium iron phosphate. For the battery lithium-ion electrolyte, ether is the most popular compound.

When compared against various other types of batteries, there are a number of advantages and disadvantages that can decide whether or not the lithium-ion battery is a good fit for your needs. As of the present, the lithium-ion battery is considered to have one of the highest energy densities, that of which ranges between 250-670 Wh/L. Additionally, their delivered voltage is often around three times that produced by a nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) or nickel–metal hydride (NI-MH) battery. Coupled with their low maintenance requirements that do not necessitate scheduled cycling, lithium-ion batteries can be extremely useful.

Alongside such advantages, lithium-ion batteries are also known for their lack of a memory effect, that of which is when partial discharge and charge cycles are repeated to the point that the battery is forced to “remember” a lower capacity. Typically, this is a downside of Ni-Cd and Ni-MH batteries. Additionally, lithium-ion batteries are not constructed with cadmium which is highly toxic, meaning that they are easier to dispose of. With their various benefits, lithium-ion batteries have established themselves as the champion of portable electronic device powering solutions. While commonly implemented within consumer goods, lithium-ion batteries may also be used to support the operations of major commercial aircraft and other aerospace applications.

Nevertheless, no technology is without its shortcomings, and it is important to understand the disadvantages lithium-ion batteries hold before making a purchasing decision. If a lithium-ion battery begins to overheat during high-voltage operations, it may lead to damage. As such, lithium-ion batteries must be managed with care, and safety mechanisms for voltage limitation and pressures are crucial, especially when the battery is present in an aircraft or similar vehicle.

While lithium-ion batteries are well-known for their performance advantages over nickel-cadmium and nickel-metal hydride options, they do fall short in certain aspects. For one, lithium-ion batteries typically come at a higher price point, often being 40% more expensive than popular alternatives. Additionally, the effects of aging on their performance can be noticeable after a certain number of years, necessitating regular maintenance and replacement of parts to ensure ample operability and reliability.

Once you have taken into account the various advantages and disadvantages posed by lithium-ion batteries, it is time to begin the purchasing process. Whether you are a first-time buyer or looking for replacements, one should always rely on leading distributors for the sake of receiving top-quality parts that can be depended on. Luckily for you, Sourcing Streamlined is a leading distributor with AS9120B, ISO 9001:2015, and FAA AC 00-56B accreditation.

With over 2 billion items ready for purchase at any time from our database, we are your one-stop shop for battery lithium rechargeable parts, battery lithium ion components, and other various related items. If you are facing a time constraint and require parts fast, we utilize our expansive supply chain network to expedite the shipping process for domestic and international customers alike. Furthermore, we also support AOG situations with same-day shipping and/or delivery on select in-stock items. If you would like to learn more about our capabilities or are ready to initiate the purchasing process, give us a call or email at your earliest convenience, and we would be more than happy to assist you however we can!


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