A new type of battery, which, it is believed could store up to 20 times more energy for its size and weight than the present lead-acid kind is being investigated by a U. S. Government sponsored research team at the Energy Research & Development Administration's Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in California. Concurrently, tests with nickel-zinc batteries are being undertaken by the National Aeronautics & Space Administration's Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. As a part of their studies, the Lawrence Livermore researchers are exploring similar batteries based on reactive but potentially less expensive metals such as calcium, magnesium, aluminum, sodium and their alloys. These batteries are of the primary type, that is to say they are "recharged" by replacing the lithium rather than by being recharged electrically. A sample nickel-zinc battery at NASA Center makes use of cells produced by two industrial contractors, a feature of which is an inorganic separator adapted from space battery technology. The battery has been installed in an electric utility van, using a battery weight equivalent to the conventional lead-acid type. Tests have shown that with the nickel-zinc battery it was possible to make almost twice as many stop-start driving cycles per charge as with the lead-acid battery (190 to 99). Driven at a constant speed of 20 mph, the van ran for 54.9 miles with the nickel-zinc battery and only 29.4 miles with the lead-acid before recharging was necessary.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Allens (Clerkenwell), Limited

    39 High Street
    Wheathampstead, Herts AL4 8DG,   England 
  • Publication Date: 1976-12

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00158370
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Engineering Index
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 27 1977 12:00AM