AS9120B, ISO 9001:2015, and FAA AC 0056B ACCREDITED

Brief Overview of Tubular Gel Batteries

There are many benefits to implementing lead-acid battery technology rather than lithium-ion battery technology or other electrochemical systems in your projects. As lead-acid batteries are affordable, reliable, recyclable, and safe, they have quickly become go-to choices for many operations. Despite such advantages, there are a few key drawbacks to consider.

When using conventional flood lead-acid batteries for deep cycle applications, additional maintenance is required to top up the batteries as a result of water loss via gassing. Furthermore, in attraction battery applications, you must completely recharge the battery in a limited time frame. Generally, this necessitates high voltages which may lead to breakdown or water loss from the electrolyte through gassing.

Such measures can rack up costs for large installations as they often require expensive extraction equipment, making it an incredibly inconvenient option. Other disadvantages include transport, storage, and disposal. The liquid acid in the lead-acid battery is considered a very hazardous material for transport. Luckily, this is not a problem within the industry because it often operates using safe and proven procedures.

Tubular Gel Batteries v. Regular Batteries

You may ask yourself: “What is the difference between a tubular gel battery and a regular battery?” To answer this, you must familiarize yourself with the unique features of a tubular gel battery. Tubular gel batteries are flooded and the acid is flowing freely inside the cells. Meanwhile, a vent at the top allows water to be added in order to compensate for water loss due to gassing. Keep in mind that the flooded battery or vented battery must be utilized in a vertical position. It is also important to know how acid is immobilized in gel and absorptive glass mat (AGM) batteries.

Acid immobilization creates a means for recombining the hydrogen and oxygen gasses that are produced from the breakdown of water within the battery when being charged. There are two main ways to achieve acid immobilization. The first is through the use of the AGM which holds the acid in place. The second consists of adding a fine silica powder to make a gel as is the case for tubular gel lead-acid batteries.

Of the two methods, the use of a silica-gelled electrolyte is known for being the best solution for deep discharge tubular gel lead-acid battery designs. This is because gelled electrolytes enable a tubular positive lead plate to be used, which provides the best deep cycle properties for lead-acid batteries. More than that, you can avoid the stratification of acid associated with deep discharges, and the limited-voltage recharging without gassing linked to tubular gel batteries. It is worth noting that the benefit of immobilization lies primarily in the fact that it prevents the stratification of acid with varying densities within the cells, also called acid stratification.


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