Recycling

U.S. Battery Manufacturing And The Battery Industry, Celebrate Their Commitment Towards Positive Environmental Change On Earth Day

Since 1970, Earth Day has stood as a celebration of the modern environmental movement. Today people and industries around the world, including the lead battery industry, have answered the call to help improve our world by developing methods of manufacturing and operations that are more environmentally friendly. As a result of these new approaches, lead batteries are now a sustainable energy source used in a wide range of applications.

The battery industry has emerged as one of the major success stories of this Earth Day movement. Flooded Lead Acid (FLA) batteries are recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the most recycled consumer product in the nation. The innovative recycling methods for the lead battery industry result in 99 percent of every lead battery being recycled. Translating into 130-million used batteries not reaching landfills annually. Over the decades, the process has evolved to use almost every part of the battery. Battery reyclingThe polypropylene outer case and cover are broken down into small pellets and manufactured into new batteries and other plastic products. The internal lead components of the battery are melted down to make components for new batteries. The battery’s electrolyte is neutralized and purified into water or converted into sodium sulfate, a compound commonly used in laundry detergent, glass, and textiles.

The effects of the battery industry’s efforts, however, don’t end there. As well as reducing its environmental impact, the battery industry provides $26.3-billion in revenue to the nation’s economy, impacting suppliers, worker spending, transportation, and distribution sectors. According to the Battery Council International (BCI), the international trade association of battery manufacturers, an estimated $1.7 billion is put into payroll within an industry of approximately 25,000 workers in the United States.

In addition, advancements in battery technology have turned lead batteries into one of the most cost-efficient forms of energy, allowing battery-powered equipment to operate cleanly and with increased reliability. Lower operating costs also offer advantages to lead battery-powered machinery and vehicles, further reducing emissions and reducing the environmental impact of other industries that embrace battery power.

U.S. Battery is proud to be a part of this effort and continually encourages customers and industries it’s involved in to recycle and use battery power where ever possible. Please join U.S. Battery and others in the global community in celebrating Earth Day by visiting the EarthDay.org website and finding an event to participate in or ways to take action. For more information, visit www.earthday.org, or for more information on sustainable deep-cycle batteries for various applications, visit www.usbattery.com.

 

U.S. Battery Manufacturing Suspends Exports Of Its Deep-Cycle Battery Products To Russia

Due to the current geopolitical situation, U.S. Battery Manufacturing is suspending all exports of its products to Russia. “We are concerned for the people of Ukraine and their suffering as a result of the aggressive military actions taken by the Russian government,” said U.S. Battery COO Don Wallace. “In response, we will not be exporting any further U.S. Battery products to Russia. We will continue to pray, and offer support to the Ukrainian people in the hopes that this unprovoked act of violence ends as quickly as possible.”

U.S. Battery has been exporting to Russia for more than 10-years and is a major global supplier of deep-cycle batteries that are used in numerous industries. For more information on U.S. Battery’s products, visit www.usbattery.com.

U.S. 145 XC2 with XC2 logo

Let’s Make It In America

In his State of the Union address, President Biden called for an end to relying on foreign supply chains and stated, “Let’s make it in America.” The Battery Council International (BCI) agrees, and according to Roger Miksad, executive vice president of the council, the U.S. lead battery manufacturing, and recycling industry is ready to meet the challenges.

Miksad stated that the U.S. lead and battery industry is proud of its existing domestic infrastructure that meets more than 90% of the domestic lead battery demand. According to the BCI, the U.S. supply chain employs nearly 25,000 people generating $26.3 Billion in economic contribution to the country’s economy.

With environmental issues also at the forefront of the President’s agenda, the BCI reminds Americans that in the U.S., lead batteries are manufactured utilizing a closed-loop system. In this system, the industry collects more than 130-million used batteries each year and recycles them to make new batteries that contain 80% recycled materials.

“Lead batteries are essential to building energy independence,” said Miksad. “They employ the most sustainable battery technology to aid in both mitigating climate change and securing energy independence for our country. Nearly every new electric vehicle contains a 12-volt lead battery to power critical safety functions. They enable low-carbon start-stop technology that keeps 5.3 million tons of greenhouse gases from the environment annually.”

According to the BCI, lead batteries are the most sustainable battery technology that aids in building energy independence and annually keeps 5.3-million tons of greenhouse gases out of the environment. “They provide renewable energy storage capabilities for commercial wind and solar farms,” says Miksad. “As well as in residential and community-based installations to capture energy generated by the wind and sun.”

The BCI and battery manufacturers like U.S. Battery are constantly looking to improve battery technology. Through continued investment in research and development with the U.S. National Laboratories system, the battery industry is pursuing next-generation battery technology and energy storage solutions that will be built by U.S. workers across the nation.

INNOVATIVE SOLUTIONS TO MODERN BATTERY-POWER NEEDS

The rechargeable lead-acid battery has been in continuous development since its initial introduction separately by Siemens, Sinsteden, and Planté during the period of 1852 – 1859. Since then, battery manufacturers such as U.S. Battery, which is celebrating its 95th anniversary this year, have continually sought to improve upon the performance, life, and efficiency of deep-cycle batteries for various commercial and industrial uses.

Deep-Cycle batteries’ overall dependability, cost-effectiveness, and recyclability have enabled them to continue in widespread use since their initial development. When John Anderson took over the reins of U.S. Battery early in the company’s history, he believed it was essential to look for ways to improve upon the basic battery technology. Over the decades, U.S. Battery has continued Mr. Anderson’s legacy by modernizing and innovating deep-cycle battery designs in multiple ways. These improvements enable the company’s products to stay ahead of the changing demands of consumers and the various industries it serves.

One of the first innovations by U.S. Battery was to increase the efficiency of the grid alloys used in the current collectors called grids. Historically, during cycling, the positive grids would slowly corrode, and grid corrosion was found to be a primary failure mode. U.S. Battery improved upon the corrosion resistance of the grids by adding selenium to the antimony grid alloys. The addition of selenium acts as a grain refiner to produce a fine-grain alloy that increases its strength and electrical conductivity as well as reduces corrosion. The effect of this improvement is that positive grid corrosion is no longer a primary failure mode, and the cycle life of F.L.A. deep-cycle batteries has been significantly increased.

The active materials pasted on the grids in a battery’s positive electrodes have also been improved over the years. The active materials start out as basic lead sulfates, and tetrabasic lead sulfate (TTBLS) has been shown to provide the longest cycle life.  Historically, TTBLS crystals have been ‘grown’ in a process called hydroset.  Because growing crystals depends on many factors such as time, temperature, humidity, etc., the sizes of the finished TTBLS crystals can be unpredictable. U.S. Battery has found that through the use of crystal seeding additives, the size and distribution of these crystals can be controlled to produce consistently small crystals distributed uniformly throughout the electrode.  Using a process the company calls Xtreme Capacity, U.S. Battery was able to provide customers with increased initial capacity, faster cycle-up to the full rated capacity, higher peak capacity, and improved charging using the wide range of charger technologies used in various applications.

As improvements to the positive electrodes were made, U.S. Battery realized that improvements to the negative electrodes were needed to balance the active materials’ performance in the battery.  Improving the negative electrodes’ performance allowed U.S. Battery to increase the battery’s overall capacity and extend service life. To do this, improved expanders were used in the negative active materials to prevent the natural tendency of the negative active material to shrink or coalesce during cycling. U.S. Battery also found that in applications with limited time for charging, progressive undercharge can result in negative plate sulfation.  This is often referred to as a partial state of charge (PSOC) operation.  To improve upon this problem, it was discovered that introducing structured carbon materials such as advanced graphites, graphene, and nano-carbons can improve dynamic charge acceptance and control sulfation. This allows renewable energy applications with unpredictable charging from solar, wind, and other renewable energy sources to advance with greater reliability and energy storage capability.

When deep-cycle batteries are used in a vehicle, the motion of the vehicle continually mixes the electrolyte and prevents electrolyte stratification.  However, in renewable energy applications where the batteries are stationary, there is no mechanical mixing of the electrolyte.  In these applications, it is essential to recognize the importance of proper charging to create gassing to mix the electrolyte properly. U.S. Battery has developed special charge algorithms to provide the appropriate amount of over-charge, including equalization charging to prevent electrolyte stratification.

While these improvements on 100-year-old battery technology have kept industries worldwide running efficiently, U.S. Battery is continually searching for ways to improve efficiency further and maintain a level of cost-effectiveness. Once again, the requirements of battery-powered equipment have evolved, both for consumers and the industries that rely on them. U.S. Battery has responded with the development of new product lines that incorporate the reliability, longevity, and capacity that the company’s customers have come to expect. The latest generation of deep-cycle batteries has been shown to last longer, are lighter in weight, and feature a technologically advanced design that will meet the demands of the customer’s energy needs now and in the future. Designed and assembled in the U.S.A., the new product line will be available worldwide exclusively from U.S. Battery. More information on what’s coming from U.S. Battery will be announced in the coming months.

 

Recycling

Is It Cost Effective To Go Green With Lead-Acid Deep Cycle Batteries?

For many business owners making an effort to go “green” can be an expensive process, requiring investments in new equipment and infrastructure. But if a company decides to be more environmentally conscious by investing in battery-powered machines and vehicles, it may also prove to be a cost-effective choice. While switching to battery power reduces the need for plug-in electricity and combustible fuels for power, there’s also the added benefit of lower overall operating costs.

Deep-cycle lead-acid batteries are the most cost-effective form of power for these types of machinery and vehicles. According to Fred Wehmeyer, Senior VP of Engineering at U.S. Battery, lead-acid batteries provide more energy per cycle at a lower cost per kilowatt-hour than any other type of battery chemistry. That means that the use of lead batteries can translate to lower operating costs over time. It gives companies using them a greater incentive, knowing that the operating costs would absorb any up-front expenses.

In addition to lower costs, there are other environmental advantages. Perhaps the most important is that deep-cycle lead-acid batteries are a sustainable source of energy. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognizes lead batteries as the most recycled consumer product in the nation. The foundation for this has been the lead-acid battery industry’s ability to create a model recycling program, one in which essentially 100 percent of them are recycled. It prevents millions of used lead-acid batteries from reaching landfills, as it is a problem currently happening with other battery chemistries.

So the question that commonly arises is, if switching to battery power is environmentally better and more cost-effective, how can various industries and rental companies make the most out of their battery-powered machines and vehicles? The answer, according to Wehmeyer, is to make sure you start with a battery that is rated for the optimum power requirements of the application and the type of cleaning machine. Selecting the correct battery further minimizes the upfront costs of going “green” in this manner and helps to extend service life for continued low operational costs.

Batteries come with various capacity ratings, so Wehmeyer recommends starting with one that matches the duty cycle of the vehicle or machinery will require. Purchasing a battery with too little capacity will shorten overall battery life and increase annual operating costs because you will have to replace them more often. On the other hand, selecting a battery with more capacity than needed will add to the initial purchase cost without necessarily increasing battery life.  Also, Wehmeyer reminds us that deep-cycle battery cycle-life ratings are not always compared using the same basis by different manufacturers.  Typically, cycle life comparisons are based on the depth of discharge (%DOD) using the C20 capacity as a baseline.

To truly take advantage of the benefits of going “green” with deep-cycle battery power, it’s also essential to perform a routine maintenance schedule. This routine should include checking water levels and filling as necessary, performing a monthly equalization charge, and minimizing the total DOD to 50 percent or less during each use. Doing these things will dramatically increase battery life and ultimately lower operational costs that will make your investment pay off in the end.

Looking at how batteries play an integral part in being environmentally friendly, it’s easy to see why many industries have continued to utilize flooded lead-acid batteries to power everything from fleets of golf cars and floor cleaning machines to aerial lifts and more. In addition to reducing annual operating costs, industries and individuals embracing battery power are also doing their part to help the economy and the environment.

U.S. Battery Manufacturing And Delta-Q Technologies Partner In Battery Compatibility Program

Corona, Calif.- U.S. Battery Manufacturing and Delta-Q Technologies have partnered together for a new program called “Charged by Delta-Q”. The program provides tools that showcase U.S. Battery products that are integrated with Delta-Q in a curated network of tested and compatible battery and charging solutions.

“Delta-Q’s battery compatibility program strengthens collaboration in the industry. It supports battery and BMS partners like U.S. Battery Manufacturing as they pursue new markets by giving them the opportunity to show their affiliation with Delta-Q’s global brand,” says Sarah MacKinnon, Delta-Q’s Co CEO and CFO.

The ‘Charged by Delta-Q’ program is intended to empower OEMs and help partners market their solutions on a broader scale. “Our affiliation with the ‘Charged by Delta-Q’ program helps our original equipment (OE) customers select U.S. Battery products that are compatible with Delta-Q charging solutions, as well as view tested charging algorithms with Delta-Q that can provide improved performance, longer battery life, and maximum runtime,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery COO.

 

About Delta-Q Technologies

Delta-Q Technologies is a manufacturer of battery chargers, that improve the performance of electric drive vehicles and industrial machines, and is a supplier of choice for Tier 1 OEMs.  Part of the Zapi Group of companies, Delta-Q is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, with a global distribution to service industries such as electric golf cars, lift trucks, aerial work platforms, e-mobility, floor care machines, utility/recreational vehicles, and new markets, like outdoor power equipment.

Recycling

Join U.S. Battery Manufacturing In Celebrating Earth Day

Join U.S. Battery Manufacturing in celebrating the 51st Earth Day. The company recognizes this day as a continued reminder of its commitment to producing environmentally responsible energy storage products. Within the battery power industry, the focus has been to develop a cost-effective means of power while also creating a sustainable source of energy. To date, this has been done on many fronts. The most successful has been the recycling rate of lead batteries. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continually recognizes lead batteries as the most recycled consumer product in the nation.  It is a product that delivers a sustainable energy source that powers a variety of industries such as aerial lifts and cranes, maintenance, golf car and electric vehicles, the RV and marine industries, as well as renewable energy power and backup power systems.

The recycling process means new life for old batteries. When a lead battery is recycled, virtually every part of it is broken down and reused. This process starts with the polypropylene outer case, which is broken down into small pellets to be reused for other plastic products. The lead components of the battery are melted down to make new batteries. The sulfuric acid in the battery’s electrolyte can be neutralized and purified into water or converted into sodium sulfate, a compound commonly used in laundry detergent, glass, and textiles.

With a continued push towards advancements in batteries, the future of the environment looks brighter. The investments made now into this technology will help keep the Earth safer for the future.  For more information on Earth Day or to find an Earth Day event near you, visit www.earthday.org.

US Battery AGM Deep Cycle logo

US Battery Manufacturing Updates Its AGM Battery Line With A New And Improved Performance Deep-Cycle Design

U.S. Battery Manufacturing has launched its new and improved line of AGM Deep-Cycle batteries specifically designed to provide increased deep-cycling performance. “Our advanced line of AGM Deep-Cycle batteries have features that improve cycling performance and longevity, which makes them a better choice for customers wanting maintenance-free reliable operation,” says Zachary Cox, U.S. Battery VP Operations.

The new AGM Deep-Cycle batteries will be available after March 22, 2021, with updated features such as the use of thick positive alloy grids for exceptional corrosion resistance, high-density positive active material, and advanced glass mat separators. These components work together to maintain the battery cell structure during deep-cycling, limit acid stratification, and inhibit internal shorts.

The batteries also feature a carbon-enhanced negative active material that improves charge acceptance and cycling performance. In addition to being resistant to vibration, fully sealed, and maintenance-free, U.S. Battery’s new AGM design improves reliability, overall performance, and delivers longer cycle life.

In addition to these design upgrades, U.S. Battery’s AGM Deep-Cycle line will also have a new look, featuring a new case and graphics on redesigned labels. On top of the current 6V, 8V, and 12V models, the product line is also expanding to include new 6V and 12V options. “More of our customers are asking for high-performance deep-cycle batteries that are maintenance-free and cost-effective alternatives to lithium,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery COO. “We’re responding with engineering that delivers the superior performance and reliability needed for modern battery-powered equipment and vehicles.”

U.S. Battery’s complete line of AGM and Flooded Lead-Acid Deep-Cycle batteries are available for a wide variety of applications such as EV Golf Car & Utility, AWP, RV, Marine, Floor Cleaning Machines, and Renewable Energy.

 

Battery Day

RECOGNIZING THE IMPACT OF BATTERIES ON NATIONAL BATTERY DAY

Join U.S. Battery in celebrating February 18th, National Battery Day! NBD allows us to celebrate the impact batteries have in our daily lives and reminds consumers of the recycling efforts essential to allow batteries as a vital energy source.

Overall, the battery industry plays a vital role in everything from transportation, medical, aerospace and defense, communication, renewable energy, and other industries. One of the most common batteries in use is lead batteries, mainly because of their high efficiency, low cost, and the fact that they are also nearly 100 percent recyclable. U.S. Battery deep-cycle, lead battery products, for example, are used in everything from aerial lifts to off-grid housing, floor cleaning machines, and many other applications.

Economic Impact

According to the Battery Council International, the non-profit trade association for the lead battery industry, lead batteries are a proven technology with more than 160-years of unmatched resiliency and reliability. They also report that lead batteries provide more than 90-percent of the backup power required for 24/7 telecommunications and backup recovery systems that protect lives, investments, and data in an emergency. Within the transportation and motive power sectors, 12V lead batteries have a projected growth reaching more than six percent in the automotive market alone between 2015 and 2030, bringing the market value to $31.9B.

In the United States, lead batteries provide a $26.3-billion impact on the economy that involves suppliers, worker spending, transportation, and distribution. It provides an estimated $1.7-billion in annual payroll, supporting an industry that employs nearly 25,000 workers. Aside from studies that show lead-acid batteries are the safest and most reliable sources of energy, studies show they also represent some of the lowest cost-of-operation options available.

Good For The Environment

Another reason to celebrate batteries on NBD is that they are the most recycled consumer product, recognized by The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The recycling process breaks down the outer casings made of polypropylene, then washed, melted, and extruded into small pellets. Manufacturers use these pellets to produce new battery cases as well as other plastic products. The lead oxide and lead grids of the battery’s interior are melted in a smelting furnace to form lead ingots to make new battery components. The sulfuric acid in the battery’s electrolyte is neutralized and purified into water that meets EPA clean water standards before being recirculated. The recycling process converts the acid into sodium sulfate, a compound commonly used in laundry detergent, glass, and other textiles. The process creates a sustainable energy source that is the model of recycling in the United States.

A Sustainable Energy Source

The U.S. Department of Energy is also looking at the role lead batteries may have on the future of energy storage because of its recycling rate, strong domestic base, high safety record, and low-cost efficiency. The DOE issued a 2020 report on Grid Energy Storage Technology Cost and Performance Assessment that includes lead batteries as one of seven storage technologies receiving attention, along with lithium batteries.

While it’s great to acknowledge that batteries have provided consumers and industries with a viable energy source for more than 150 years,  NBD reminds us to be responsible consumers. As batteries become more of an important energy source, it’s reliant upon industries and consumers to familiarize themselves with the various chemistries, where your batteries come from, and how each type of battery can be properly disposed of and recycled.

One of the most important things you can do to observe NBD is to gather old or used batteries and properly recycle them. Disposing of batteries in landfills can cause chemical and fire hazards. Therefore, finding a local store, organization, or recycling facility is an essential part of the process. To do this, the Battery Council International recommends using www.call2recycle.org, a national non-profit organization, to help consumers identify the various battery types and to locate local recycling centers and disposal options.

The Battery Council International’s Statement On President-Elect Joe Biden’s Build Back Better Recovery Plan

President-elect Joe Biden announced his Build Back Better Recovery Plan which outlines historic investment in Research & Development in markets “where global leadership is up for grabs” including “battery technology … and clean energy.”

“The lead battery industry, with its strong domestic supply chain, is ideally positioned to rapidly deliver on the President-elect’s promise to have American jobs support the nation’s post-Covid economic recovery, and also to ensure America’s global leadership on technological innovation and a green economy infrastructure,” said Roger Miksad, Battery Council International executive vice president and general counsel.

Lead batteries will be the dominant rechargeable battery technology for the foreseeable future, are the most recycled consumer product in the nation, and are the global leader in a variety of green applications from well-known automotive uses supporting clean mobility in low-carbon start-stop and micro-hybrid vehicles, to the growing utility and renewable energy storage markets which are ushering in a global energy transition.

The U.S. lead battery industry invested $100 million in R&D in 2019 and through agreements with the U.S. National Laboratories system is actively pursuing next gen battery technology and energy storage to meet the needs of a market that is expected to grow from 360 GWh in 2020 to 430 GWh in 2030.  These battery innovations are being developed by U.S companies and will be built by U.S. workers in communities across the nation.