Understanding Batteries: Principles, Functions, and Types

Definition of Battery – Battery (Battery) is a tool that can change the chemical energy it stores into Electrical energy which will then be used by an Electronic device. Almost all portable electronic devices such as cellphones, laptops, flashlights, and remote controls use batteries as their power source. With the battery, we no longer need to connect electrical cables and activate our electronic devices so that they can be easily carried anywhere. In everyday life, we can meet two types of batteries including batteries that can only be used once ( single use ) and rechargeable batteries .

Definition of Battery

Batteries are electrical-chemical devices that store energy and release energy in the form of electricity. Batteries that are usually sold (disposable / single use) have an electric voltage of 1.5 volts. Batteries in the form of tubes or boxes. There is also what is called a rechargeable battery, which is a battery that can then be recharged, as is usually found in mobile phones. Disposable batteries are also known as primary batteries, while rechargeable batteries are also known as secondary batteries. Maybe you often think about how this small object is able to provide energy to other, larger objects, and ask how does a battery work so that it is then able to produce energy for other objects?

Battery Working Principle

A battery is a device capable of producing DC voltage, namely by converting the chemical energy contained in it into electrical energy through an electrochemical reaction, Redox (Reduction – Oxidation). There are 2 types of processes that occur in the battery:

Charging Process: The process of converting electrical energy into chemical energy

If the battery is connected to a load then the electrons will flow to the positive electrode (PbO2) through the load from the negative electrode (Pb), then the negative ions will flow to the positive electrode and the positive ions will flow to the negative electrode. Electric current can also flow due to the presence of electrons which then move to and from the cell electrodes through ionic reactions between the electrode molecules and electrolyte molecules, thus providing a way for electrons to flow.

Discharging Process: The process of converting chemical energy into electrical energy

This process is the reverse process of the discharge process where an electric current flows in the opposite direction to the current that occurs during discharge. In this process, then every water molecule will break down. Free oxygen ions unite with each Pb atom on the positive plate which will then form tin peroxide (PbO2).

Meanwhile, each pair of hydrogen ions (2H+) near the negative plate unite with the negative sulfate ions (SO4–) on the negative plate to form sulfuric acid.

Battery Function

If we talk about the function of this battery, you can say that it is a conductor of electricity to an object, so that an object that is energized with an electric current can work optimally. From this process, it can be said that the function of the battery is very important in objects that need to be electrified.

Even though along with the times and technology, it can make an object work well without a battery, but the use of this battery is still being used. For example, on cellphones , laptops, and so on.

Simply put, the existence of a battery allows users to turn on or operate certain devices without having to plug directly into the source of electric current.

Apart from that, it can also be said that the function of the battery is to provide or supply electrical energy for electronic devices without having to be connected to electricity.

Battery Type

Each battery consists of a positive terminal (cathode) and negative terminal (anode) and electrolyte which then functions as a conductor. The electric current output from the battery is Direct Current or also known as DC Current (Direct Current). In general, batteries then consist of 2 main types namely Primary Batteries which can only be used once (single use battery) and Secondary Batteries which can be recharged (rechargeable battery).

Here is a full explanation of both types of batteries.

1. Primary Battery (Battery Disposable/Single Use)

Primary batteries or disposable batteries are the batteries most often found on the market, almost all shops and supermarkets sell them. This is due to its widespread use at a very affordable price.

Batteries of this type also generally provide a voltage of 1.5 Volts and consist of various types of sizes such as AAA (very small), AA (small) and C (medium) and D (large). Besides that, there is a Primary Battery (disposable) which is then in the form of a box with a voltage of 6 Volts or 9 Volts. The types of batteries belonging to the Primary Battery Category (single use) include among others.

a. Zinc-Carbon Battery (Zinc-Carbon)

Zinc-Carbon batteries are also often referred to as “Heavy Duty” batteries which we often encounter in shops or supermarkets. This type of battery then consists of Zinc material which functions as the Negative Terminal as well as the battery wrapper. Meanwhile, the positive terminal comes from carbon in the form of a rod. The Zinc-Carbon type battery is also a type of battery that is relatively inexpensive when compared to other types.

b. Alkaline Battery (Alkaline)

This Alkaline Battery then has a longer lifespan at a higher price when compared to Zinc-Carbon Batteries. The electrolyte it uses is Potassium Hydroxide which is then an Alkaline Substance, so its name is also called an Alkaline battery.

c. Lithium Battery

Lithium batteries can be a type of battery that has better performance when compared to other types of primary (disposable) batteries. Lithium batteries can also be stored for more than 10 years and can work at very low temperatures.

Because of these advantages, Lithium type batteries are then often used for memory backup applications on Microcomputers as well as Watches. Lithium batteries can then be made in the form of coins or also called coin batteries. In addition, there are also those who later call it Button Cell or Button Battery.

d. Silver Oxide Battery

Silver Oxide battery is a type of battery that is quite expensive in terms of price. This itself is due to the high price of Silver (Silver). Silver Oxide batteries can then be made to produce high Energy but with a relatively small and light form.

This type of Silver Oxide battery is also often made in the form of a Coin Battery or Button Cell. This type of Silver Oxide battery is also often used in watches, calculators, and military applications.

2. Secondary Battery (Rechargeable Battery)

Secondary Battery is a type of battery that can be recharged or Rechargeable Battery. In principle, the way the secondary battery generates electric current is the same as the primary battery. It’s just that, the chemical reaction in the secondary battery can also be reversed (reversible).

When this battery is used by connecting the load to the battery terminal (discharge), these electrons will then flow from negative to positive. Meanwhile, when the external energy source (charger) is then connected to the secondary battery, these electrons will flow from positive to negative, resulting in charging of the battery.

We often find the types of rechargeable batteries, such as Ni-Cd (Nickel-Cadmium), Ni-MH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) and Li-Ion (Lithium-Ion) batteries. The types of batteries that fall into the category of secondary batteries (rechargeable batteries), include:

a. Ni-Cd (Nickel-Cadmium) Battery

The Ni-Cd (NIckel-Cadmium) battery is a type of secondary (rechargeable) battery that uses Nickel Oxide Hydroxide and Metallic Cadmium as the electrolyte material. This Ni-Cd battery has the ability to operate in a wide temperature range and long cycle life. On the one hand, Ni-Cd batteries will then self-discharge at around 30% per month when they are no longer in use.

Ni-Cd batteries also contain 15% Toxic/poison, namely Carcinogenic Cadmium which can harm human health and the environment. Currently, the use and sale of Ni-Cd (Nickel-Cadmium) batteries in this consumer portable device has been prohibited by the EU (European Union) based on the regulations “Directive 2006/66/EC” or known as the “Battery Directive”.

b. Ni-MH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) Batteries

This Ni-MH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) battery has almost the same advantages as Ni-Cd, but Ni-MH batteries have a 30% higher capacity when compared to Ni-Cd batteries and do not contain the harmful substance Cadmium which will damage the environment and human health. Ni-MH batteries can also be recharged up to hundreds of times so that you can save money on purchasing batteries.

Ni-MH batteries also have a self-discharge of about 40% every month when not in use. Currently, Ni-MH batteries are also widely used in cameras and radio communications. Even though it does not contain the dangerous substance Cadmium, Ni-MH batteries still contain a small amount of harmful substances that can damage human health and the environment, so they need to be recycled and cannot be disposed of anywhere.

From the discussion above, it can be said that batteries are indeed difficult to be separated from our lives, just like cell phones. Thus the discussion about the understanding of the battery to the types of batteries. Hopefully all the discussion above can be useful for Sinaumeds.

Recommended Books Related to Batteries

1. Car Battery Knowledge

A car battery is a device that stores energy to supply the car’s electrical system, such as to start the car at start or start, ignition system, body and lighting electrical systems, car instrument systems, AC electrical systems, wiper systems, electrical systems, and other systems.

2. Introduction to Power Electronics, AC-DC Rectifier

This book Introduction to Power Electronics was written as an effort to enrich the library treasury in the field of electrical engineering, especially in the field of electrical power engineering. This book puts the main emphasis on the basic concepts of introduction to power electronics; introduction of power switch components; power circuit terminology and concepts; voltage, current and power in three-phase circuits; power electronics support circuits; uncontrolled rectifier circuit; rectifier circuit controlled; DC-DC converters; and alternating voltage controller (AC-AC controller).

This book takes simple examples in application to the power electronics system itself so that the application of the concepts, theories and methods can be easily applied. After reading this book, it is hoped that students will be able to understand the importance of the concepts and methods of working power electronics systems, then apply them correctly.

3. The Energy Transition: A Policy, Implementation, and Funding

At this time, energy demand is still dominated by fossil energy sourced from fuel oil and coal. However, the government continues to make efforts to reduce the use of fossil fuels and transition towards the use of renewable energy such as biomass, geothermal, wind and solar. In addition to overcoming the increasingly limited fossil energy, energy transition policies are also carried out to overcome the impacts of climate change. The energy transition policy is prepared comprehensively with measurable goals, namely reducing Greenhouse Gas [GHG] emissions, producing cleaner energy, and increasing energy security by using renewable and efficient potential resources.

“This book is expected to be a contribution to the Fiscal Policy Agency in providing information to the public regarding the various efforts that have been and will be carried out by the government in achieving national energy security that is sustainable, environmentally friendly, and friendly to climate change. We hope that this book can provide the maximum benefit for readers to jointly improve the economy, build the nation, and improve the welfare of all Indonesian people so that we achieve the sustainable development goals we have aspired for.” —Febrio Nathan Kacaribu Head of the Fiscal Policy Office of the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Indonesia

4. Power Distribution, Theory and Practice

The book entitled Distribution of Electrical Power -Theory and Practice which contains theory and examples of problems with their solutions, which is specifically for students of the Electrical Engineering Jui.usan. However, it is possible for other disciplines to develop according to their fields. The chapters in this book consist of:

  • Load Characteristics: discusses the load assessment factors and their definitions.
  • Distribution Network System: discusses primary distribution network, radial primary network system, loop/ring primary network system, grid/network primary network system, spindle and cluster primary network system.
  • Application of Topology Matrix in Radial Power Distribution Systems: discusses the electric current in each segment with the topology matrix of the radial shape power distribution system, and the maximum power loss in the network.
  • Work Factor Improvement: discusses the definition of lagging and leading, phase angle, power triangle, and work factor improvement.
  • Estimated Load Growth: discusses correlation theory, graphing equations, least squares method, straight line least squares curve, exponential trend, determining the coefficients a and b of the regression line equation Y = a + bX, and estimating peak loads.
  • Study of Power Flow in Primary Distribution System with Radial Network Type: discusses topology techniques, network characteristic equations, injection current equations, voltage drop in radial networks, power equations, iteration radial network power flow calculation algorithms, and radial network power flow calculations without iteration.
  • Load shedding: discusses the operation of the electric power system after the generator is disconnected, the design of industrial load shedding systems, and the criteria for setting frequency relays.