UltraBattery® technology was created to exploit the performance benefits of the Partial State of Charge (PSoC) band, while mitigating the deteriorating effects of conventional lead-acid technology.
To avoid the effects of sulphation and electrolysis (see ‘How UltraBattery® works‘), UltraBattery® operates in a Partial State of Charge (PSoC). This PSoC operation results in many performance benefits. Compared with conventional VRLA batteries, UltraBattery® is more efficient, lasts longer, has a lower lifetime cost, takes charge faster and needs fewer refresh cycles.
The UltraBattery® Performance Benefits
UltraBattery® is an entirely new class of lead-acid technology that has an entirely new set of performance enhancing features:
High Lifetime Capacity Turnover Before Replacement
Capacity turnover indicates the amount of possible energy throughput in relation to the capacity of the battery.
A higher capacity turnover indicates the battery provides more energy over its lifetime. In variable power applications, UltraBattery® has been shown in testings to exceed four or more times the capacity turnover of competing best-performing conventional VRLA batteries.
Because UltraBattery® can be charged and discharged more often than conventional VRLA batteries, it can process much more energy in its lifetime than standard lead-acid batteries.
UltraBattery® thus has a much longer life when used in variable power application than conventional VRLA batteries and needs replacing less often.
Lower Lifetime Cost Per Kilowatt Hour
The lifetime of a battery depends on how it is used, and how many cycles of charging and discharging it is put through.
In variable power applications where batteries are put through multiple Partial State of Charge cycles per day, UltraBattery® has been shown to last a multiple of times longer than a conventional VRLA battery.
Because UltraBattery® lasts longer and needs less frequent replacement than conventional VRLA batteries, it has a lower lifetime cost per kilowatt hour.
Higher DC-DC Efficiency
A battery’s DC-DC efficiency describes the amount of energy put into the battery by charging versus the amount of energy that is discharged by the battery to a load connected to it. During charging and discharging, some of the battery’s stored energy is lost as heat, and some is lost to the process of electrolysis. Effectively, the lower the energy losses of a battery, then the more efficient it is.
UltraBattery® achieves a typical DC-DC efficiency of 93–95% when performing variability management applications, such as grid regulation services or renewable ramp rate smoothing at 1C peak power in a Partial State of Charge (PSoC) regime.
When performing energy-shifting applications in PSoC, UltraBattery® achieves a typical DC-DC efficiency of 86–95% (rate dependent). In contrast, conventional VRLA batteries performing energy shifting at their typical top of charge regime achieve a typical efficiency of less than 70%.
Lower DC-DC Energy Losses
The high DC-DC efficiency of UltraBattery® translates to lower DC-DC energy losses. Conventional VRLA’s operating at 80–100% SOC lose about five times more energy to heat and electrolysis than UltraBattery®.
Fewer Refresh Cycles
Conventional VRLA batteries must be refreshed (also known as overcharged) after a certain period of operation to dissolve sulphate crystals that have accumulated on the negative electrode and replenish the capacity of the battery.
Because refreshing takes place at high voltages for an extended time, the resulting electrolysis corrodes the positive electrode, thus shortening battery life.
UltraBattery® when used for renewable or grid support can operate without a refresh charge for as long as 60 days, whereas conventional VRLA batteries should be refreshed approximately every 9-13 days. UltraBattery® cells in automotive applications are commonly operated continually in a Partial State of Charge regime without refresh. Fewer refreshes mean a longer battery life.
Less Downtime Due to Refresh Cycles
A typical refresh takes 6–12 hours, and the battery cannot be used during this time. When the batteries are being refreshed, it is therefore considered downtime.
An UltraBattery®, if refreshed once every 60 days, has a downtime of less than 1%, and is therefore available for use 99% of the time. In contrast, a conventional VRLA battery that takes 12 hours to refresh every nine days has a resulting downtime of 5% and available for use only 95% of the time.
High Rate Charge Acceptance
Because UltraBattery® can operate in the Partial State of Charge range, it can accept charge much more efficiently than conventional VRLA batteries.
When UltraBattery® is used in a PSoC regime to perform variability management applications, such as grid regulation services or renewable ramp rate smoothing, it has exceptional charge acceptance capability.
The actual charge acceptance rate is dependent on the particular UltraBattery® cell, but it is typically a multiple improvement over that of conventional VRLA batteries used in a typical top-of-charge cycling regime.
UltraBattery® Performance Benefits
- operates in a Partial State of Charge
- is more efficient, lasts longer, has a lower lifetime cost, accepts charge faster and needs fewer refresh cycles than conventional lead-acid batteries.