The LIFEPO4 Lithium Battery
You probably remember lithium from chemistry class, where you performed experiments (or stared at your crush). Lithium iron phosphate batteries, also known as LFP or LiFePO4, are taking charge of the battery world.
They are the safest sort of lithium battery and have better thermal and structural stability than lead acid and most other lithium chemistries. They are incombustible and won’t decompose at high temperatures.
There has been a lot of hype about lithium batteries recently due to some incidents where cell phones, laptops, electric cars, and other devices have caught on fire or exploded. However, there are many different types of lithium batteries and some of them are safer than others. If you are unsure about which type of lithium battery to choose, we recommend consulting with an experienced technician.
LiFePO4 batteries are considered one of the safest lithium-ion battery options available. They have a longer life cycle than lead acid batteries and do not produce any hazardous fumes or chemicals. They are also free of rare and heavy metals, making them environmentally friendly. Moreover, these batteries can be recharged hundreds of times without losing their original capacity.
While the energy density of lithium-ion batteries is rapidly increasing, manufacturers must pay close attention to manufacturing methods. The thinner separators used in today’s batteries can allow metallic dust particles to penetrate and cause an internal short-circuit, resulting in fire or explosion. To prevent this from happening, a battery management system is built into each cell. The BMS acts as a simple on/off switch, turning the battery off when voltage or current parameters get close to their unsafe limits. This makes lithium-ion batteries a safe choice for powering your device or solar energy setup.
The positive electrode in a LIFEPO4 battery is constructed from lithium iron phosphate, which makes it the safest of all lithium battery types. The iron and phosphate creates a grid-like structure that LIFEPO4 lithium battery loosely traps the lithium ions, preventing them from spreading to the negative electrode when the battery is discharged. The BMS monitors the cell and only releases the lithium ions to the cathode when charging.
The battery can be charged to full capacity in a fraction of the time it takes for lead acid batteries and has improved CCA per physical size. This allows batteries to be smaller, lighter and easier to install. These are the reasons why they have rapidly been adopted by bass boats, RVs and solar setups among others.
Battery aging is less of an issue for lithium batteries than it is with lead acid, though it does happen over time. The reason for this is how the battery operates: lithium ions move between electrodes to generate an electric current. Each time they are yanked from one electrode and stuffed into the other they cause damage, in particular to the carbon of the negative electrode. Over time this causes microscopic cracks in the cell. To extend the life of a lithium battery it is best to only discharge it to around 30% of its capacity.
Lithium Iron Phosphate or LFP batteries are the safest lithium battery type. They are also one of the longest lasting. Their cycle life is over 4x longer than lithium ion batteries. They are the best choice for use with electric motors and are used in electric cars, bass boats, RVs, golf carts, solar energy systems and more.
Unlike other lithium batteries, LFP does not have any risk of thermal runaway when the battery is damaged. Thermal runaway is when the battery gets hot enough to vent its flammable electrolyte, resulting in explosions and fires.
Because of this safety, the battery can be pushed harder and will still work well. It is not recommended to cycle a battery down to less than 30% SOC though. Cycling deep drains has a negative effect on cycle life and it is best to only discharge the battery to about 20% SOC for most applications.
Temperature also plays a big role in the lifespan of an LiFePO4 battery. The higher the temperature, the faster the battery ages. LIFEPO4 lithium battery Keeping the battery at around 30 Centigrade or lower will extend its lifespan the most.
There are a variety of consumer needs that require batteries that have more power, a longer lifespan, and fit into environmentally conscious lifestyles. The lithium iron phosphate battery (LiFePO4) is one such option that meets these needs. It is non-toxic, has a high power potential, and can be recharged many times over. It also has a much lower environmental impact than other lithium battery types.
These batteries are more efficient than nickel-metal hydride and lead-acid batteries. They are not only greener to make, but also require less energy to mine and process. This makes them an ideal choice for solar power systems and green electric boat propulsion solutions. They can also be recycled, unlike traditional batteries that pose a serious threat to the environment when they are improperly disposed of.
LiFePO4 batteries can achieve up to 5000 cycles at 1C and 80% DoD, which is more than 4x the cycle life of other lithium battery types. This is an excellent feature for applications that need consistent performance. Its long life, low self-discharge rate, and reduced weight are also a major selling point.
In addition, these batteries are not prone to a memory effect, which means that they can be charged and discharged at any time without losing their capacity. This is a great benefit for consumers who want to maximize their battery usage.