Dying Lead-Acid Battery Market Leads to Strong Need for Ultracapacitors

The need for higher power and higher energy density is prompting design engineers and C-level executives to evaluate energy storage technologies.  Lead-acid batteries, a technology that has been around for more than 100 years, is slowly dying in applications such as electric bikes, forklifts and other transportation vehicles.  This is because of the advent of better “stop start” functionality in regular vehicles, the emergence of electric vehicles and the introduction of the lithium-ion battery.  In addition, China is shutting down its lead-acid battery production, and governments are focusing more of their research and development on different options. This paves the way for ultracapacitors, which have hundreds of  times the life of rechargeable batteries and can be charged-discharge d much faster that any battery used in electric vehicles for regenerative braking.

Earlier this month, the Energy Harvesting Journal cited ultracapacitors as one of the options design engineers are focusing on as replacements or complements for batteries and to better meet consumer demand for improved vehicle performance. Here’s a short overview of why the lead-acid battery needs to be replaced:

  1. Conventional gas-powered vehicles are being replaced by hybrid electric vehicles, which need stop/start batteries that work in all temperatures.
  2. There is a need to reduce manual intervention and performance for indoor electric industrial vehicles and outdoor forklifts that have hybrid powertrains.
  3. In China, cities are banning or restricting electric bikes because of accidents that cause congestion and lead pollution, which leads to the disposal and pollution of lead-acid batteries. This also leads to tougher pollution laws worldwide.
  4. Emission laws are getting tougher on transportation vehicles; consumers want better performance, which in turn results in longer warranties and a better fuel economy.

It is clear that the lead-acid battery market is spiraling downward. Ultracapacitor manufacturers have an opportunity to increase production because of the need for higher performance and the efficiency needed to propel the transportation industry to the next level.

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  • Ioxus uSTART® Battery Replacement for Heavy Equipment Increases Starting Reliability

    ONEONTA, N.Y., April 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Ioxus, Inc., a leading developer and manufacturer of ultracapacitors and energy storage products, announced today that the 24V uSTART® battery support system is now being offered as the heavy equipment industry's only drop-in replacement product that needs no special wiring. Using two group 31 batteries in series, with one 24V uSTART in parallel, users can replace their 4D battery in heavy equipment.

    The ultracapacitor-based product is designed with smart power electronics to assist in starting engines up to 50L for large off-road equipment.  Using the available Smartphone Bluetooth app, once the uSTART is connected to the batteries, users can look at the voltage of the batteries, the charge level of uSTART, initiate a jump start without connecting any wires, or put the unit into maintenance mode for safe removal or repairs.

    The goal of the uSTART system is to provide the vehicle with a start, no matter the condition of the existing batteries or external temperature. If the batteries run too low duread more...

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