Battery Manufacturing And Recycling Efforts Are The Benchmark For The Move Towards Positive Environmental Change

This year U.S. Battery Manufacturing celebrates the 50th anniversary of Earth Day we continue to try to make environmental improvements in the face of a new threat. While this year’s celebration will be different than in previous years, we take this moment to recognize industries and individuals who are committed to making our world a better, safer place and continue to make positive strides.

At U.S. Battery, we remain focused on responsibly producing quality batteries, which set the industry standard for cycling performance and durability. From an environmental standpoint, Flooded Lead Acid (FLA) batteries are at the top of the list when considering recyclability. More than 99% of the materials are recycled into new batteries. This level of recycling means that 130 million used lead batteries are prevented from reaching landfills every year. These efforts have resulted in the recognition, of lead batteries, by the U.S. Environmental Agency as the most recycled consumer product.

As the battery industry continues to do its part for the environment, U.S. Battery and battery manufacturers worldwide, are also committed to providing an essential service during the COVID-19 outbreak. Our batteries are being used as backup power for call centers, hospitals, and temporary field hospitals, as well as powering the floor machines that are helping keep them clean.

While we’re proud to be a part of this effort, the U.S. Battery family would like to thank those on the frontline of fighting this dangerous disease. All of your efforts have been inspirational. Together we will get through this.

Join others in virtually celebrating Earth day by visiting the Earth Day Live event online, which features digital events that address climate change and showcase messages of hope and optimism. Visit https://www.earthday.org/earth-day-live/

U.S. 145 XC2 with XC2 logo

U.S. Battery And TCED Intl Inc. Come To A Positive Settlement After A Dispute Over The Use Of Red-Colored Deep-Cycle Batteries

U.S. Battery Manufacturing and TCED Intl Inc. (Trans-Canada Energies Distribution) have come to a settlement benefiting both parties over the disagreement of distributing deep-cycle batteries with a red-colored top and case in Canada.

The dispute began in 2017 when U.S. Battery was unaware of TCED’s Canadian trademark registrations to the all-red color used in a private line of deep-cycle batteries sold within the franchise’s group.

Both companies have now entered into an agreement that allows U.S. Battery to continue its distribution of an all-red colored battery line within Canada under a specialized licensing agreement with TCED. U.S. Battery also becomes one of TCED’s official suppliers of red-colored lead-acid batteries sold under house brands, Trans-Canada and Batteries Expert Bolts series, both of which are sold through retail stores and more. The Batteries Expert banner is operated by B.E. Franchises Inc., a corporation owned by TCED.

“We are very happy to see this matter finally settled in such a positive manner,” said Donald Wallace, COO, U.S. Battery Manufacturing Company. “U.S. Battery is looking forward to working with the TCED team to expand both of our businesses throughout the Quebec market.”

Within the agreement, TCED is appointed by U.S. Battery as its Tier-1 authorized distributor of USB products within the Provence of Quebec and will serve as purchasers of USB products across Canada. “We are very happy that this matter was resolved positively,” Stated Elise Rozon, CEO, TCED INTL INC. “TCED is looking forward to establishing a long term partnership with USB throughout Quebec’s market.”

 

About U.S. Battery Manufacturing:

U.S. Battery Manufacturing Company was founded in 1926 and is currently one of the largest global producers of premium deep-cycle batteries. The company has three manufacturing locations, one in Corona, California and two in Augusta, Georgia.

About TCED Intl Inc.:

TCED INTL Inc. has been distributing portable and renewable energy solutions since 1964. Located on the South Shore of Montreal in Quebec, the company is considered an industry leader throughout North America. The inventor of the Booster PAC®, a revolutionary portable battery boosting system, TCED has always strived to be at the leading edge of technology by offering its clients innovative solutions.

TTBLS structure grown with additives

Improving Deep-Cycle Batteries Through Additives

Battery manufacturers have improved deep cycle battery performance through the use of additives, but not all of them result in the same benefit to customers. At the core of all deep-cycle flooded lead-acid (FLA) battery technology is a basic design that has undergone continuous improvement over more than 100 years. Lead battery chemistry is one of the most reliable and cost-effective technologies over any other type of battery used in a variety of global industries. While these batteries have historically been the most widely used and the most recycled, a variety of additives and technologies have been introduced over the last few years to improve their efficiency to an even greater extent.

Grid Alloys

Historically, the primary failure mode of deep-cycle lead-acid batteries has been positive grid corrosion. The grid alloys used to manufacture deep-cycle flooded lead-acid battery plates typically consist of lead with additions of antimony to harden the soft lead, and to improve the deep cycle characteristics of the battery. Additional metals are often added to the lead-antimony alloys to improve strength and electrical conductivity. Another additive that is used to enhance lead-antimony alloys is selenium. Selenium acts as a grain refiner in lead-antimony alloys. This fine-grain alloy provides additional strength and corrosion resistance over conventional lead-antimony alloys. The effect of these improvements is that positive grid corrosion is no longer the primary failure mode, and the cycle life of FLA deep cycle batteries has been significantly increased.

Active Materials

The starting materials for deep cycle FLA positive active materials are made from a mixture of lead oxide, sulfuric acid, and various additives. These materials improve the performance and life of the positive electrodes in a finished battery. Historically, positive electrodes have been processed using a procedure called hydroset. This procedure is designed to ‘grow’ tetrabasic lead sulfate (TTBLS) crystals in the plates to provide the strength to resist the constant expansion and contraction of the active materials during cycling. This crystal growing process has limitations in its ability to control the range of sizes of the TTBLS crystals. Through the use of crystal seeding additives, the range of crystal sizes can be controlled to the most desirable sizes. These uniform crystal sizes in the TTBLS structure result in increased initial capacity, faster cycle-up to rated capacity, higher peak capacity, and improved charging using the wide range of charger technologies used in various applications.

Concurrent with the improvements in deep cycle FLA positive active materials, improvements in the performance of deep-cycle FLA negative active materials are needed. Carbon additives have been used in the negative active materials of lead-acid batteries for many years. These additives have been used in lead-acid battery expanders to prevent the natural tendency of the negative active material to shrink or coalesce during cycling. Negative active material shrinkage can reduce the capacity and life of deep-cycle FLA batteries. Recent improvements in these carbon materials have opened up new opportunities to improve several performance limitations of lead-acid batteries. New structured carbon materials such as graphites, graphenes, and nanocarbons have been used to control sulfation and improve chargeability in a partial state of charge (PSOC) applications such as renewable energy.

Although the basic structure of an FLA battery hasn’t changed for more than 100-years, manufacturers are continually searching for ways to improve efficiency while maintaining their cost-effectiveness. Additives are one of the ways FLA batteries are becoming more efficient, and new technologies to further enhance them are on the horizon.