3 Tips For Customizing The Best Lithium-ion Battery For Your Product

Posted February 21, 2016

3 Tips For Customizing The Best Lithium-ion Battery For Your ProductEngineering an application you plan to bring to market often comes with unpredictable challenges. That’s why planning ahead for circumstances you can foresee is so important.

For example, it’s wise to decide on your battery as you begin designing your product. This allows you to incorporate your battery’s size, capacity and weight in the conceptual decisions you make, resulting in a more cohesive design. Of course, you’re not limited to designing around off-the-shelf models. Custom batteries may be the best option for your application if you need a power source that:

  • Is oddly shaped
  • Has a specific weight requirement
  • Has unique dimensions

Many engineers choose to equip their product with rechargeable lithium-ion batteries due to lithium’s performance benefits. With 10 times the life span of lead acid batteries, lithium is a valuable deal in the long term. Lithium-ion technology is also lighter, offers a much higher usable capacity and charges with greater efficiency.

Not every battery provider has the expertise to help you design the best custom lithium-ion battery pack for your needs. As you search for the right battery maker, consider the following three tips for creating a custom lithium-ion battery:

1. Understand Your Application

To design the right battery for your system you must understand your product’s requirements, including:

  • Voltage
  • Capacity
  • Current

Engineers often forget to factor in current when they design a custom battery. This is why it’s helpful to have a lithium-ion technology expert guiding you through the battery design process.

Your current also plays a role in how much capacity you need. If your application requires a higher current, you will need a larger battery with greater capacity. Remember, your battery must be able to handle peak load current as well as your average current.

2. Ensure Your Battery Has Enough Space

During normal discharge cycles, your product’s battery needs a little extra room to breathe. You should also plan for extra space in your design in case you need a slightly larger battery to increase run time.

You may want to collaborate with your battery maker as you design your application. Asking the right questions up front about how much space you need helps to prevent mistakes such as leaving too little room for your lithium-ion battery.

3. Choose An Expert Battery Maker

Before you decide on a provider to create your custom solution, schedule a battery consultation to make sure your provider is an expert. Your consultant must be knowledgeable about the facts on lithium. If you have a question your consultant is unable to answer, they should at the very least be able to direct you to the right resources.

Your provider should also offer guidance on whether LiFeP04 or other lithium chemistries are more suited to your application. While LiFeP04 has the highest cycle life, other chemistries have more energy density per cubic inch. This is a strategic decision you must make, and the right battery provider is able to help.

Most importantly, you should receive the highest level of service from your provider. Designing a custom lithium-ion battery is an investment, so your battery maker must be willing to go the extra mile to ensure your solution is the perfect fit.