Posted on: 10 February 2020
Heavy industry and marine applications are two of the most demanding environments for any battery. Although lithium-ion batteries are beginning to take hold in some industries, lead-acid batteries remain the gold standard for reliability, safety, and cost-effectiveness.
Flooded and absorbant glass mat (AGM) batteries are the most common technologies found in lead-acid energy storage systems, but AGM batteries are often the preferred choice where budget allows. If your facility is still using flooded lead-acid batteries, then it may be time to consider a switch.
The Key Differences Between AGM and Flooded Batteries
Lead-acid batteries are relatively ancient as far as battery technology goes. First developed over 150 years ago, this mature technology has evolved in a variety of ways since its inception. Despite these advances in battery technology, the typical example still uses a lead anode and cathode with an acid-electrolyte solution.
Flooded lead-acid batteries contain a "free" electrolyte solution. These batteries require periodic maintenance since water in the solution is lost as a result of both evaporation and the chemical process that generates energy. They are also susceptible to leakage in cases where they are mounted improperly or subject to jostling or vibration.
By contrast, an AGM battery contains a mat that absorbs the electrolyte solution. AGM batteries are a sub-type of sealed lead-acid batteries, which means that they do not require maintenance and are not susceptible to leaks. Some amount of water is still lost as a part of their regular operation, but not enough to prevent the battery from reaching its full potential lifespan.
AGM Advantages for Industry
Aside from cost, AGM batteries suffer from only one potential downside: they tend to have a slightly shorter lifespan when compared to traditional flooded batteries.
With that one pitfall out of the way, it should be clear why AGM-style batteries are rapidly becoming a standard in many industries. Sealed batteries in general are safer and require less labor overhead for maintenance. If the maintenance checklists for equipment on your floor are already a mile long, it's easy to see why it would be advantageous to remove an extra item.
Reducing the cost of maintenance isn't the only reason to prefer a sealed battery, however. AGM batteries are also incredibly well-suited to areas where maintenance access may be difficult or impossible or for equipment where flat mounting is not possible. Since AGM batteries do not "leak," they can be mounted in any orientation.
Whatever your particular use case, it is likely that moving to AGM-style batteries will offer your company significant benefits for both maintenance and safety.
To learn more about industrial AGM batteries, consult a resource in your area.Share