Batteries and accumulators are electrochemical power sources. Chemical reactions take place in them on the basis of which electricity is generated. Each battery consists of one or more cells to obtain the required supply voltage. Cells are divided into primary – non-rechargeable and secondary – rechargeable cells. In primary cells, an irreversible chemical reaction takes place that produces electricity. Primary cells are used in batteries.
Types of batteries
There are batteries: zinc-carbon, alkaline, silver, mercury, lithium-manganese, zinc-air.
Zinc-carbon batteries have a rated voltage of 1.5V zinc-carbon cells. The cell’s cathode is made of a carbon rod surrounded by manganese dioxide. The anode is made of zinc. An aqueous solution of ammonium chloride or zinc chloride is the electrolyte. Batteries of this type are the oldest type of batteries that were introduced to the general public. They are used in devices with low power consumption, such as flashlights, toys, calculators, clocks, remote controls, electronic games, radios, alarm clocks, shavers, electric brushes, and measuring equipment. They are characterized by low production costs and low prices. However, they are not very efficient.
Alkaline batteries include, in which the nominal cell voltage of 1.5 V. The alkaline cell cathode in such batteries is made of powdered manganese dioxide, and the anode is zinc oxide. The role of the basic electrolyte is played by an aqueous solution of potassium hydroxide. Alkaline batteries work well for medium to high power consumption. Therefore, they can be used in portable tape recorders, portable CD players, flashlights, cameras, electronic notebooks, cordless phones, shavers, and electronic games.
Silver batteries have a rated voltage of 1.55V silver cells. The cell cathode is made of silver oxide and the anode is made of zinc. The basic electrolyte is potassium hydroxide solution. Silver batteries are distinguished by a stable output voltage that drops very quickly after discharging the battery. It is worth using silver batteries wherever voltage is important. Therefore, they can be used in devices that are sensitive to voltage changes: cameras, calculators, thermometers, watches, as well as in various types of games. Such batteries start to leak after about 5 years and then become useless and dangerous to the environment. This is because zinc corrodes in the alkaline electrolyte during storage. Usually, a silver battery is not fit for use after about 2 years.
We can also distinguish mercury batteries, in which the rated cell voltage is 1.35 V. It is relatively stable, but after discharge, it drops. The cell’s cathode is made of mercury and the anode is made of zinc. The role of the electrolyte is played by an aqueous solution of potassium hydroxide. Mercury batteries are used in cameras, calculators, watches, and electronic notebooks. Due to the fact that they contain mercury, they are rarely found on the market.
Lithium manganese batteries are another type of battery. Their rated cell voltage is 3.0 V. The battery anode is made of lithium and the cathode is made of powdered manganese dioxide. These batteries use an organic electrolyte. Electricity is generated during the oxidation of lithium. Lithium-manganese batteries are resistant to temperature fluctuations. Lithium batteries can be widely used to back up the memory in clocks, cameras, cameras, calculators, computers, surveying and data acquisition, and transmission systems. Batteries of this type work in the temperature range from minus 40 to plus 65 degrees Celsius. They have a very low self-discharge rate, which is why they will be useful for up to about 10 years.
Zinc-air batteries have a nominal cell voltage of 1.4 V. The cathode in these batteries is oxygen and the anode is zinc powder. The electrolyte is potassium hydroxide. The most important advantage of these batteries is their long storage time. These batteries can last up to 4 years in factory-sealed packages. The operating time of each such battery is from 3 to 4 months. They are usually used in hearing aids or in telemetry devices.
Battery types: summary
It is worth knowing what types of batteries are in order to be able to choose the right type for a specific application. There are so many types of batteries that everyone can easily find the right one for them. It’s also worth knowing the battery markings. Then we will know even more about which battery it is actually good to decide on. The battery market is large and you need to think carefully to choose the right one. However, finding the right battery is by no means complicated. You can also always ask the suppliers for advice in the store.