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INTRODUCTION OF Ni-Cd BATTERIES

Nickel-cadmium cells have an anode (negative) in cadmium hydroxide and a cathode (positive) in nickel hydroxide, immersed in alkaline solution (electrolyte) comprising potassium, sodium and lithium hydroxides. The cells are rechargeable and deliver a voltage of 1.2 V during discharge.
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Types of Ni-Cd batteries

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AMPERE- HOUR RATING FOR BATTERIES

An ampere-hour or amphour (symbol Ah , Ah, A h) is a unit of electric charge, with sub units milliampere-hour (mAh) and milli-ampere second (mAs). One ampere-hour is equal to 3,600coulombs (ampere-seconds), the electric charge transferred by a steady current of one ampere for one hour.
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The ampere-hour is frequently used in measurements of electrochemical systems such as electroplating and electrical batteries. The commonly seen milliampere-hour (mAh or mAh) is one-thousandth of an amperehour (3.6 coulombs). A milliampere second (mAs) is a unit of measure used in X-ray diagnostic imaging and radiation therapy.

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This quantity is proportional to the total Xray energy produced by a given X-ray tube operated at a particular voltage. The same total dose can be delivered in different time periods depending on the Xray tube current. The Faraday constant is the charge on one mole of electrons; approximately equal to 26.8 ampere-hours. It is used in electrochemical calculations. An ampere-hour is not a unit of energy.
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In a battery system, for example, accurate calculation of the energy delivered requires integration of the power delivered (product of instantaneous voltage and instantaneous current) over the discharge interval. Generally, the battery voltage varies during discharge; an average value may be used to approximate the integration of power. In summary, the higher the mAh, the longer the battery will last.
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CHARACTERSTICS OF Ni-Cd BATTERIES

1.2 Volt secondary cells using an alkaline chemistry with energy density about double that of lead acid batteries. They use nickel hydroxide Ni (OH) 2 for the positive electrode (cathode), cadmium Cd as the negative electrode (anode) and an alkaline potassium hydroxide KOH electrolyte. The cells are sealed and utilize a recombinant system to prevent electrolyte loss and extend the useful life.
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They use nickel hydroxide Ni (OH) 2 for the positive electrode (cathode), cadmium Cd as the negative electrode (anode) and an alkaline potassium hydroxide KOH electrolyte. Once the battery of choice for low power portable products they have lost market share to the newer Nickel Metal Hydride and Lithium batteries. Open cells are prismatic in shape, with casing in plastic (possibly flame retardant) or stainless steel or nickel steel.
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APPLICATIONS OF Ni-Cd BATTERIES

Motorized equipment

Power tools Two way radios Electric razors Commercial and industrial portable products Medical instrumentation Emergency lighting Toys

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Low internal resistance (less than half

the equivalent NiMH cells). High rate charge and discharge rates possible. Up to 10C discharge rates for short periods typical. Flat discharge characteristic (but falls off rapidly at the end of the cycle) .
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Flat discharge characteristic (but falls off rapidly at the end of the cycle) . Tolerates deep discharges - can be deep cycled. Wide temperature range (Up to 70C). Typical cycle life is over 500 cycles. Charging process is strongly endothermic-the battery cools during charging.
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Rapid charge typically 2 hours, but can be as low as 10 to 15 minutes. The columbic efficiency of nickel cadmium is over 80% for a fast charge but can drop to below 50% for slow charging. The sealed nickel-cadmium cell can be stored in the charged or discharged state without damage. It can be restored for service by recharging several charge/discharge cycles.
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The electrolyte is commonly available, low cost potassium hydroxide KOH. Available in a large variety of sizes and capacities. This makes it possible to charge very quickly, as the I2R heating and endothermic chemical reactions counteract each other.

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SHORTCOMINGS OF Ni-Cd BATTERIES

A major drawback of this technology is its susceptibility to memory effect. Originally, the terms memory effect or memory problem was coined to describe a cyclic memory problem where the NiCad battery would "remember" the amount of discharge for previous discharges and limit the recharge life of the battery. The problem is less prevalent with modern Ni-Cd batteries, which are designed to avoid cyclic memory issues.
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The memory effect is caused by a change in crystalline formation from the desirable small size to a large size which occurs when a NiCad battery is recharged before it is fully discharged. The growth of large crystals increases the cell impedance and can eventually prevent the battery from discharging beyond that point and/or cause rapid self-discharge of the battery.
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The growth of large crystals can be avoided by either completely discharging it each time it is used or by using a NiCad battery charger which has a built-in discharge circuit. Memory effect can sometimes be reversed by putting the battery through several complete discharge and recharge cycles which helps to recover the smaller crystal formations. This is called reconditioning. NiCad batteries are also prone to damage by overcharging.
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Low cell voltage of 1.2 Volts compared with primary alkaline cells 1.5 Volts and only quarter of the capacity of the alkaline cells. Self-re-sealing safety vents must be incorporated to prevent damage due to overheating and pressure build up. Cadmium is a high cost heavy metal and its use in consumer products is now deprecated on environmental grounds. The gradually being phased out in favor of Nickel metal hydride and which superior energy density characteristics and performance characteristics.
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TEMPERATURE CHARACTERSTICS
"Eveready" sealed nickel-cadmium cells experience a relatively small change of output capacity over a wide range of operating temperature. Charging, however, must be done in a much narrower range. Temperature limits applicable to operation of the cells are listed in the specification sheets for each battery.
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The capacities vs. temperature curves which are on some individual specification sheets represent cells discharged at the temperatures shown after charging at room temperature for 14 hours at the 10 hour rate . This characteristic is also generalized on the following curve.
Contd./-

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OPERATION OF SEALED Ni-Cd BATTERIES

Any secondary cell is a combination of active materials which can be electrolytic oxidized and reduced repeatedly. The oxidation of the negative electrode occurring simultaneously with the reduction of the positive generates electric power. In a rechargeable battery both electrode reactions are reversible and the input of current in the proper direction from an outside source will drive the primary or discharge reaction backwards and in effect recharge the electrodes.
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In the uncharged condition the positive electrode of a nickel-cadmium cell is nickelous hydroxide, the negative cadmium hydroxide. In the charged condition the positive electrode is nickel hydroxide, the negative metallic cadmium. The electrolyte is potassium hydroxide. The average operating voltage of the cell under normal discharge conditions is about 1.2 volts.
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The over-all chemical reaction of the nickel cadmium system can be considered as: (Charged) KOH (Discharged). During the latter part of a recommended charge cycle and during overcharge, nickelcadmium batteries generate gas. Oxygen is generated at the positive (nickel) electrode after it becomes fully charged and hydrogen is formed at the negative (cadmium) electrode when it reaches full charge.
Cd + 2NiOOH + 2H2O =Cd (OH) 2 + 2Ni (OH) 2
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DISCHARGING OF BATTERY
HIGH CURRENT PULSE DISCHARGE: High rate nickel-cadmium cells will deliver exceedingly high currents. If they are discharge continuously under short circuit conditions, self-heating may do irreparable damage. The heat problems vary somewhat from one cell type to another, but in most cases internal metal strip tab connectors overheat or the electrolyte boils.
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General overheating is normally easy to prevent because the outside temperature of the battery can be used to indicate when rest, for cooling, is required. In terms of cut off temperature during discharge, it is acceptable practice to keep the battery always below 45degreeC (113F). The overheated internal connectors are difficult to detect.
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This form of overheating takes place in a few seconds or less, and overall cell temperature may hardly be affected. It is thus advisable to withdraw no more ampere seconds per pulse, and to withdraw it at no greater average current per complete discharge, than recommended on the data sheet for the "Eveready" cell in question. In special cases, where cooling of the cell or battery is likely to be poor, or unusually good, special tests should be run to check the important temperatures before any duty cycle adjustment is made.
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Output capacity is any discharge composed of pulses is difficult to predict accurately because there are infinite combinations of current, "on" time, rest time, and end point voltage. Testing on a specific cycle is the simplest way to get a positive answer. The cell is designed so that the oxygen formed in the positive electrode can reach the metallic cadmium surface of the negative electrode which it oxidizes directly. Thus, in overcharge, the cadmium electrode is oxidized at a rate just sufficient to offset input energy, keeping the cell in equilibrium indefinitely. At this point of equilibrium the positive electrode is fully charged.
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SELF-DISCHARGE
Self-discharge characteristics of Energizer nickel-cadmium cells are shown in the chart below.

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CONTINUOUS-OVERCHARGE
The overcharge capability of Energizer cylindrical nickel-cadmium cells is outstanding. The next chart illustrates initial and subsequent discharge curves after 2 years continuous overcharge without periodic discharges. The first discharge after the 2 year charge period yields a slightly reduced voltage curve and 65% capacity. The second cycle after 2 years continuous overcharge provides essentially the same discharge curve as the initial one.
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VARIOUS OTHER BATTERIES

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