ISRO–BHEL tie up for Production of Space Grade Lithium-Ion Cells

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has entered into Technology Transfer Agreement (TTA) with Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) to transfer technology for manufacturing space grade Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) cells.

The technology transfer will enable BHEL to produce space grade Li-Ion cells which can meet country’s space programme requirements. It can also be adopted to cater Li-Ion cell requirement for other national needs.

Key Facts

The ISRO uses Li-Ion batteries as power sources for satellite and launch vehicle applications due to their high energy density, reliability and long cycle life. ISRO’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) at Thiruvananthapuram has successfully developed technology to produce space grade Li-ion cell. It also has demonstrated performance of cell under various testing conditions and established its cycle life characteristics in accelerated mode. These Li-Ion cells are currently being used for various satellite and launch vehicle applications.

Li-Ion battery

Lithium-ion battery or Li-ion battery is type of rechargeable battery that contains several cells. Each cell consists of cathode, anode and electrolyte, a separator between electrodes and current collectors. In it, lithium ions move from negative electrode to positive electrode during discharge and back when charging. Li-ion battery use intercalated lithium compound as one electrode material.

Benefits of Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) battery

The lithium-ion battery is light weighted and is one-third the weight of lead acid batteries. It is nearly 100% efficient in both charging and discharging as compared to lead battery which has 70% efficiency. It completely discharges i.e. 100% as compared to 80% for lead acid.

The rechargeable lithium-ion battery has life cycle of 5000 times or more compared to just 400-500 cycles in lead acid. It also maintains constant voltage throughout the entire discharge cycle whereas voltage in lead acid battery drops consistently throughout its discharge cycle. It is much cleaner technology and is safer for environment as it does not have environmental impact as lead acid battery.

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Categories: Science and Technology Current Affairs - 2018

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