What's the best battery cell?

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What's the best battery?

Carbon Zinc (1.5V) "Heavy Duty" or "Super Duty"
1
5%
Alkaline (1.5V) AAA
0
No votes
Alkaline (1.5V) AA
2
10%
Alkaline (1.5V) C
0
No votes
Alkaline (1.5V) D
0
No votes
Alkaline 9V
0
No votes
Lithium Iron Disulfide (1.5V) AAA
0
No votes
Lithium Iron Disulfide (1.5V) AA
1
5%
Lithium Iron Disulfide 9V
0
No votes
Rechargeable NiMH (1.2V) AAA
0
No votes
Rechargeable NiMH (1.2V) AA
3
14%
Silver Oxide (1.55V) Coin-type (SR626SW or 377)
1
5%
Lithium Manganese Dioxide (3V) Coin-type (CR2032)
0
No votes
Lithium Manganese Dioxide (3V) CR123A
1
5%
Lithium Ion (3.7V) 14500
0
No votes
Lithium Ion (3.7V) 18650
4
19%
Lithium Ion (3.7V) 20700
1
5%
Lead Acid (12V) Car Battery
1
5%
Lead Acid VRLA / SLA (6V)
1
5%
Other / Potato
5
24%
 
Total votes: 21

KnightExemplar
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What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Tue Nov 01, 2016 11:08 pm UTC

Carbon Zinc (1.5V) "Heavy Duty" or "Super Duty": It says "Super" on the front and is cheaper than all the rest. That means its the best, right?

Alkaline (1.5V) : Cheap, dependable but sometimes leaks and corrodes everything.

Lithium Iron Disulfide: Because $1.75 for a single one-time use battery means I care!

Rechargable NiMH: The only time you can tell everyone that you prefer LSD... like Eneloop.

Lithium Maganese Dioxide (3V) Coin-type: So you can continue playing your SNES games!

Lithium Manganese Dioxide (3V) CR123A: I see you're either a photographer, or a crazy prepper who thinks that CR123A will be the only battery left on store shelves after the zombie-apocalypse.

Lithium Ion (3.7V) 18650: Cause if its good enough for the Tesla Model S... its good enough for my flashlight! (Also the most common battery cell inside of laptops and battery banks)

Lithium Ion (3.7V) 20700: I guess the 18650 wasn't good enough for Tesla.

Lithium Ion (3.7V) 14500: When the 18650 is too big.

Lead Acid (12V) Car Battery: If its worked for over a hundred years, why change the design?

Lead Acid (6V) VRLA / SLA: Home Security backup battery / Verizon Landline Phone backup battery.

Other / Potato: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSk_37So0Xk (If not a Potato, please explain)

--------

I gotta go with Rechargeable NiMH AA or maybe the Lithium Ion 18650 right now.
Last edited by KnightExemplar on Wed Nov 02, 2016 4:12 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby Thesh » Wed Nov 02, 2016 3:20 am UTC

If you aren't going to have "Human's plugged into a almost perfect virtual reality running the worlds single most powerful supercomputer, consuming 99% of all energy on Earth" or "potato" you should at least have an "other."
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Wed Nov 02, 2016 4:12 am UTC

Thesh wrote:If you aren't going to have "Human's plugged into a almost perfect virtual reality running the worlds single most powerful supercomputer, consuming 99% of all energy on Earth" or "potato" you should at least have an "other."


Added Potato, as requested. If there are any other requests, please pull them in quickly, before people vote. It appears that the polls reset each time I add a new category.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby somitomi » Sat Dec 10, 2016 10:19 am UTC

I personally think all non-rechargable batteries are a horrendous waste, and should be banned as soon as possible. Other than that I have no clear opinion (mostly because I haven't even heard of some of these options), but the Lithium-ion batteries in my phone and laptop serve me well.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Mon Dec 12, 2016 5:30 pm UTC

somitomi wrote:I personally think all non-rechargable batteries are a horrendous waste, and should be banned as soon as possible. Other than that I have no clear opinion (mostly because I haven't even heard of some of these options), but the Lithium-ion batteries in my phone and laptop serve me well.


The main issue with rechargables is that they all have a degree of internal-leakage. Classic NiMH rechargables have the most, although Panasonic Eneloop claims that they can last a year without charging. However, if you buy a premium Lithium Iron Disulfide cell... those expensive one-time-use cells can last 20 years in storage.

Lithium Ions only have ~1 year of storage before leaking all of their energy away and requiring a recharge. Crappy NiMHs only last about 3 months. (Although Eneloop is able to last ~1 year now)

Even the cheap Alkaline batteries last 10 years easily. Given that a set of Alkalines can last so long and only costs $10 for a 48-pack, in many cases (ie: remote controls or electronic scales) where barely any energy is used... it'd be more cost-efficient to use an Alkaline rather than a rechargeable.

Indeed, it'd be cheaper to use Alkalines for most people rather than a rechargeable. 48-pack for $10 that lasts 10-years in storage? That's kind of hard to compete against. A rechargeable charger alone will cost ya $10 or so, let alone the AA cells.

In the other cases where you want a very reliable battery in storage (ex: emergency flashlight), a Lithium Iron Disulfide battery would work.

--------

The exception would be Wii-motes and Xbox 360 controllers, which go dead every week or so. Rechargeable batteries are superior because of the high-usage and energy-use that these sorts of devices have. Flashlight Enthusiasts also have very powerful flashlights that drain a battery within an hour... these flashlights definitely prefer rechargables.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby somitomi » Mon Dec 12, 2016 8:58 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:
somitomi wrote:I personally think all non-rechargable batteries are a horrendous waste, and should be banned as soon as possible. Other than that I have no clear opinion (mostly because I haven't even heard of some of these options), but the Lithium-ion batteries in my phone and laptop serve me well.


The main issue with rechargables is that they all have a degree of internal-leakage. Classic NiMH rechargables have the most, although Panasonic Eneloop claims that they can last a year without charging. However, if you buy a premium Lithium Iron Disulfide cell... those expensive one-time-use cells can last 20 years in storage.

Lithium Ions only have ~1 year of storage before leaking all of their energy away and requiring a recharge. Crappy NiMHs only last about 3 months. (Although Eneloop is able to last ~1 year now)

Even the cheap Alkaline batteries last 10 years easily. Given that a set of Alkalines can last so long and only costs $10 for a 48-pack, in many cases (ie: remote controls or electronic scales) where barely any energy is used... it'd be more cost-efficient to use an Alkaline rather than a rechargeable.

Indeed, it'd be cheaper to use Alkalines for most people rather than a rechargeable. 48-pack for $10 that lasts 10-years in storage? That's kind of hard to compete against. A rechargeable charger alone will cost ya $10 or so, let alone the AA cells.

In the other cases where you want a very reliable battery in storage (ex: emergency flashlight), a Lithium Iron Disulfide battery would work.

--------

The exception would be Wii-motes and Xbox 360 controllers, which go dead every week or so. Rechargeable batteries are superior because of the high-usage and energy-use that these sorts of devices have. Flashlight Enthusiasts also have very powerful flashlights that drain a battery within an hour... these flashlights definitely prefer rechargables.

Fair point, I have a pocket battery made 10+ years ago, that still delivers the promised 4.5 volts. Perhaps I should've made it clearer, that I don't consider them an economic waste but a waste of resources. I'm not even sure alkaline batteries can be recycled (hopefully yes), but even then the ratio of recycling cost to energy supplied is much higher, than with rechargeable types. And some parts of it are possibly not reusable in any way (I'm no expert on battery recycling, so I'm not actually sure) although that applies to rechargeable types too (but again moderated by their longer lifetime).
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Mon Dec 12, 2016 9:28 pm UTC

somitomi wrote:I don't consider them an economic waste but a waste of resources.


In general, things that cost less money tend to be less strenuous on resources.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics ... n-battery/

Alkalines use much less toxic and safer-to-mine resources. The chief material in an Alkaline is Manganese dioxide, Zinc, and Potassium hydroxide. The killer material of Lithium-Ion isn't actually Lithium... but Cobalt actually.

The free market has a thing where more-expensive things typically are more resource-intensive. I realize that this is not always true... but unless a good argument is given for why the more-expensive thing is actually better for the environment (ex: Coal doesn't account for the Carbon Dioxide externality)... I'm going to default to the cheaper good.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Mon Dec 12, 2016 9:33 pm UTC

somitomi wrote:I don't consider them an economic waste but a waste of resources.


In general, things that cost less money tend to be less strenuous on resources.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics ... n-battery/

Alkalines use much less toxic and safer-to-mine resources. The chief material in an Alkaline is Manganese dioxide, Zinc, and Potassium hydroxide. The killer material of Lithium-Ion isn't actually Lithium... but Cobalt actually.

The free market has a thing where more-expensive things typically are more resource-intensive. I realize that this is not always true... but unless a good argument is given for why the more-expensive thing is actually better for the environment (ex: Coal doesn't account for the Carbon Dioxide externality)... I'm going to default to the cheaper good.

I'd expect that something like a pocket battery hub, reused multiple times over its lifetime... would be superior to an Alkaline battery. But when it comes to powering wall-clocks, TV remotes, and backup-batteries for Smoke Alarms... Alkaline is both cheaper and more resource efficient. Mostly because of the safer chemical process used during manufacturing.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby commodorejohn » Mon Dec 12, 2016 10:44 pm UTC

What, no dedicated option for the Baghdad battery? This poll is nonsense.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Dec 14, 2016 1:56 am UTC

somitomi wrote: I'm not even sure alkaline batteries can be recycled (hopefully yes), but even then the ratio of recycling cost to energy supplied is much higher, than with rechargeable types. And some parts of it are possibly not reusable in any way (I'm no expert on battery recycling, so I'm not actually sure) although that applies to rechargeable types too (but again moderated by their longer lifetime).

Just over one hour ago (00:15, in a fairly busy 24-hour supermarket) I happened to see a display stand proclaiming something like1 about "the world's first recycled batteries". Given how long there have been battery-bins in stores like this, to deposit batteries for (apparent) recycling or maybe just dissassembling, this claim to be the first surprised me.

I have no idea how long that product has been available/on display, prior to tonight, but a quick rumage around on the 'net netted the following URL from last year: http://gizmodo.com/energizer-is-finally ... 1683456507

So, synchronicty being what it is, I hope you like that fortuitous FYI.


1 I didn't know I was going to read new posts in this thread, that I'd been lurking at on and off, and see the above to reply to, so I didn't actually make any special note.

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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby somitomi » Wed Dec 14, 2016 1:01 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:
So, synchronicty being what it is, I hope you like that fortuitous FYI.

I definitely do, although I wonder what happened to batteries before. It is of course possible, that they were recycled into something else like plastic bottles (as far as I know, those are not made into bottles again).
KnightExemplar wrote:In general, things that cost less money tend to be less strenuous on resources.

I'm not sure if that's so straightforward, since the manufacturer usually isn't the one dealing with waste, and so manufacturing something that's easy to make and hard to reuse could end up being cheap. While it would be easy on the resources in a short term, a more expensive recyclable option might be better in the long run.
KnightExemplar wrote:Alkalines use much less toxic and safer-to-mine resources.

I've never really thought of that, somehow I always assumed batteries were more or less same in that respect. Possibly because some disposable batteries (button cells mostly) use lithium-ion technology. But come to think of it, I did take alkaline batteries apart and the contents didn't harm me so I wonder why this didn't occur to me before. I guess I have to revoke that previous statement, and simply regard alkaline batteries with the dislike I have for all things disposable :-)
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Wed Dec 14, 2016 6:03 pm UTC

somitomi wrote: Possibly because some disposable batteries (button cells mostly) use lithium-ion technology.


Note: There is a difference between Lithium Ion batteries (which move lithium-ions around internally), and Lithium batteries (where Lithium is used as a cathode and/or anode as part of the reaction)

Lithium-button batteries are a much older technology, where Lithium itself reacts to create the electricity. There is no way to reverse the procedure.

Lithium-Ion batteries hold Lithium-ions in a vat of graphite, and the Lithium-ions transfer over during discharge. During charging, the Lithium-ions come back.

-------

Otherwise, you have good points. NiMH has the fewest rare elements and seems to be the most environmentally friendly battery (still uses a bit of Cobalt and other rare metals... but not to the same extent as Lithium-Ion). Unfortunately, the heavier weight of NiMH means that Lithium Ion has become significantly more popular these days.

In practice, NiMH and Lithium-Ion have roughly the same cost (per Whr / energy stored) as well as the same energy density per volume. But per weight... NiMH is a lot heavier. NiMH is allegedly less efficient at ~66% round-trip efficiency. While Lithium-Ion is closer to 80%.

I've got a few NiMH batteries though that I'd like to test. I have a feeling that the efficiency measurements in the textbooks are outdated.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby somitomi » Thu Dec 15, 2016 10:35 am UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:
somitomi wrote: Possibly because some disposable batteries (button cells mostly) use lithium-ion technology.


Note: There is a difference between Lithium Ion batteries (which move lithium-ions around internally), and Lithium batteries (where Lithium is used as a cathode and/or anode as part of the reaction)

Lithium-button batteries are a much older technology, where Lithium itself reacts to create the electricity. There is no way to reverse the procedure.

Lithium-Ion batteries hold Lithium-ions in a vat of graphite, and the Lithium-ions transfer over during discharge. During charging, the Lithium-ions come back.

See, maybe I shouldn't get into arguments about batteries, when I don't even read the labels properly. :mrgreen:
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby Soupspoon » Thu Dec 15, 2016 4:21 pm UTC

somitomi wrote:See, maybe I shouldn't get into arguments about batteries, when I don't even read the labels properly. :mrgreen:
There are positives and negatives, whether or not you do read them... :P

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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby somitomi » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:10 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:
somitomi wrote:See, maybe I shouldn't get into arguments about batteries, when I don't even read the labels properly. :mrgreen:
There are positives and negatives, whether or not you do read them... :P

Positives and negatives are especially important with batteries in my experience.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby Flumble » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:15 pm UTC

somitomi wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
somitomi wrote:See, maybe I shouldn't get into arguments about batteries, when I don't even read the labels properly. :mrgreen:
There are positives and negatives, whether or not you do read them... :P

Positives and negatives are especially important with batteries in my experience.

Just reverse the polarity with a screwdriver. :D

Does converting electric energy to potential energy and back count as a type of battery?

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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby HES » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:31 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:Does converting electric energy to potential energy and back count as a type of battery?

Like pumped storage hydro plants? Sure.
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:56 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:
somitomi wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
somitomi wrote:See, maybe I shouldn't get into arguments about batteries, when I don't even read the labels properly. :mrgreen:
There are positives and negatives, whether or not you do read them... :P

Positives and negatives are especially important with batteries in my experience.

Just reverse the polarity with a screwdriver. :D

Does converting electric energy to potential energy and back count as a type of battery?


Isn't that all batteries? Its typically very efficient to store the potential energy in chemical molecules.

ARES and Pumped Hydro count as "other".
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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby wumpus » Sat May 13, 2017 5:34 pm UTC

zinc/air is pretty interesting (and probably the coolest single use battery). Typically used in hearing aids, it uses air as one of the annodes. This gives it amazing power/weight (but it is still pretty expensive). Also once you expose it to air, it will keep going until it dies.

More on a possible rechargeable zinc (read cheap/light) battery here: https://arstechnica.com/science/2017/05 ... argeables/

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Re: What's the best battery cell?

Postby SuicideJunkie » Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:54 pm UTC

HES wrote:
Flumble wrote:Does converting electric energy to potential energy and back count as a type of battery?

Like pumped storage hydro plants? Sure.

Don't you need to combine multiple reservoirs into a single package in order for it to be a battery rather than just a cell?


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