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Battery Glossary

Glossary, definitions and explanation about batteries and battery technology.

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Unit of electrical current which is approximately equal to the flow of one coulomb of electricity per second.
Practical unit of quantity of electricity flowing per hour through a conductor when the current in it is one ampere. It is, therefore ( 1 Ampere× 60 second×60 minutes or ) 3600 coulombs.
Ampere to Watts (Power) calculations
Ampere ×Volts = Watts (Power /Power of the appliance). And 1000 watts makes a kilowatt.
It is an instrument used to measure the flow of current (strength of the current in amperes ) through an electrical circuit. ( and Voltmeter an instrument to measure the emf. or voltage across any two points of an electrical circuit. )
In an electrolytic cell it is the positive electrode. (and Cathode is the negative electrode.) Electrons always flow from anode to Cathode.
A battery is comprised of a number of primary or secondary cells* arranged in series or parallel. In series they give multiple E.M.F of the cell, in parallel they give the same E.M.F as the cell, but have greater capacity i.e a given current can be supplied for a longer period of time. (*Cell: A device for producing electric current by chemical reaction. A cell is made of 3 parts : An anode and a cathode in a chemical called electrolyte.)
Battery (Rechargeable)
They are a type of electrical battery which can be charged ,discharged into a load and recharged many times as opposed to a Non-rechargeable or disposable or primary battery which are supplied fully charged meant to be discarded after use. In other words , Rechargeable batteries are those which are reusable after they are discharged by recharging them.
These batteries are designed to be used once and discarded. They are popularly known as 'Use & throw away' batteries.
Battery Charger
It is a device for supplying electrical energy to a battery .
Battery Charging rate
The current expressed in ampere (A) or milliampere(mA) at which a battery is charged.
Battery Cycle
Charge followed by discharge and then a recharge is called a Battery Cycle. (Battery Cycle: Charge →Discharge→Recharge.)
Button Cell
Miniature battery (generally in the shape of a button or coin). They are mostly non-rechargeable batteries used in wristwatches ,toys etc.
Cycle Life
Number of battery cycles a battery can sustain/or deliver.
Capacity (of a battery)
It is electrical energy of a battery expressed in 'ampere -hours'. The stored energy of a battery can be by and large measured by observation of time taken by a battery to get discharged with constant outflow of current. Capacity is often considered a major quality indicator of a battery.
In an electrolytic cell it is the negative electrode.
It is an unit of electrical energy equivalent to 'One ampere per Second.
C code indicates a battery's life.
It is used to measure the charge and discharge current of a battery .In other words for a given capacity C-rate is a measure that indicates at what current a battery is charged and discharged to reach its defined capacity.( A 1C battery that is rated at 1000Ah gets charged with 1000 A at the end of an hour. It discharges too at the same rate. A 0.5C that is rated at 1000Ah with 500A takes two hours to charge.) Ah rating normally indicated on the battery.
Direct Current (DC)
An electric current flowing always in the same direction. [Alternating Current(AC) : A flow of electricity which after reaching a maximum in one direction decreases, finally reversing and reaching maximum in the opposite direction, the cycle being repeated continuously. The number of such cycles per second is the frequency.]
Daniell Cell
A primary cell having a negative pole of amalgamated zinc, standing on a porous pot containing dilute sulphuric acid. This pot stands in a copper sulphate solution which also contains the positive pole,a copper plate. On completion of the external circuit a current flows and the following reaction takes place: at the negative pole zinc dissolved and zinc sulphate is formed .At the positive pole copper is deposited.The E.M.F is 1.1 volts.
(Leclanche cell :Primary cell with a positive electrode or pole of carbon surrounded by a mixture of manganese dioxide and powdered carbon in a porous pot. This stands in a solution of ammonium chloride ,the electrolyte,in a jar which also contains the negative electrode of zinc. When the external circuit is completed, a current flows,chlorine ions in the electrolyte moving towards the zinc and ammonium ions towards the carbon electrode. The chlorine iions react with the zinc to form zinc chloride and the ammonium ions decompose at the positive electrode to give ammonia and hydrogen. The hydrogen liberated tends to cause polarization of the cell. This tendency is partly counteracted by the manganese dioxide, which oxidizes the hydrogen. The E.M.F is approximately 1.5 volts. Leclanche cells are widely used for many purposes which require intermittent current. The common dry cell is a special form of Leclanche cell.)
Depth of Discharge (DoD)
It is the Ratio of the Quantity of Electric Charge removed from a cell on discharge to its 'Rated Capacity' .
Discharge Rate
It is the rate at which current is delivered by a cell during discharging , expressed in , amperes or multiples of C rate.
Discharge Voltage
It is voltage between terminals of a cell or battery under load during discharge.
Dry Cell
A Leclanche cell with gel electrolyte.
Electromotive Force (E.M.F)
The source of electrical energy required to produce an electric current in a circuit ; a measure of its intensity. Defined as a rate at which electrical energy is drawn from the source and dissipated in a circuit when unit current is flowing in the circuit. The practical unit is Volt.
Electromotive Series
Potential Series of metals. A list of metals arranged in order of the magnitudes of their molar electrode potentials, i.e, the potential difference between the metal and a normal solution on one of its salts.
End Voltage
Prescribed voltage that indicates that discharge is completed. Fast Charging : When charging takes less than an hour at about 1.0C rate. Special Charger used for it.
Fast Charging
When charging takes less than an hour at about 1.0C rate. Special Charger used for it.
Float Charge
It is when the battery and load is permanently connected in parallel across the DC charging source that enables the battery to act as a stand-by power source to supply power to the load if the charger fails.
Galvanic Cell
A galvanic cell or Voltaic cell (Named after Luigi Galvani or Alessandro Volta respectively ) is an electrochemical cell that derives energy from chemical reaction between dissimilar conductors connected through an electrolyte and a salt bridge. A galvanic cell can also be powered by spontaneous oxidation reduction (redox) reactions.
An instrument for detecting , comparing, or measuring small electric currents,but not usually calibrated in amperes ; requires calibration when an actual current measurement is required.
Horse Power (HP)
Rate of doing work. 1 HP= 746 watts or 550 foot-pound per second.
High Rate Discharge
When discharge takes place at a current of 2C or more.
Inductive Charging
Inductive charging is a technique of power transfer without necessity of a wire or chord. It uses electromagnetic induction to provide electricity to portable devices. Induction charging is common in charging smart phones, smart watches ,tablets and also used in vehicles ,power tools,medical equipments etc.
Intelligent battery
Intelligent battery is a rechargeable battery packed with a in-built Battery Management System(BMS) usually designed for portable computer etc. with functions like Battery Level Display, Battery Life Display,Balance Charging,Auto Charging,Over Charging Protection ,Short Circuit Protection, Overheating detection,Sleep Mode and such communication. These batteries are also referred to as Smart Batteries.
Intelligent Charger
Chargers capable of reacting or responding to inputs from an intelligent battery to control or regulate or optimize the charging process.
An inverter is a device with electronic circuitry that converts direct current (DC) to alternating current(AC) .The input voltage , output voltage, frequency and overall power handling capability of the device depend on use specific design and circuitry of the device .
The unit of work.The work done in one second by a current of one ampere flowing through a resistance of one ohm.
Linear Charger
Simplest Cheap type of charger which uses a series regulator. Its efficiency is considerably less than Switch Mode Charger.
Nano Battery
Very small sized battery built with Nano Technology. Overcharge : Overcharge is the excess Ampere-hour(Ah) delivered during recharging after a battery is fully charged.
Parallel Connection
When all positive terminals (Positive to Positive) of two or more identical batteries are joined by a jumper wire and all negative terminals(Negative to Negative) are joined by another jumper wire , it is said to Parallelly Connected or Parallel Connection. In parallel connection output capacity multiplies accordance with number of batteries connected but voltage remain same as of a single battery. (Series Connection :When positive terminal of one battery is connected to the negative terminal of the second battery and so on,they are said to be connected in series. In series connection output voltage multiply but output capacity remain same as either of the batteries.)
Positive Electrode
When a cell is being discharged it behaves like a primary cell with anode a negative electrode and the cathode as positive electrode.
Pulse Charger
A hybrid charger having advantages of both switchmode charger as well as linear charger.
RAM Cell
Rechargeable Alkaline Manganese Cell.
Radox (Reduction-Oxidation) Battery
An electrochemical energy storage device which converts chemical energy into electrical energy through reversible Oxidation and Reduction of working fluids.
Secondary Battery
Rechargeable batteries .
SLA battery
Sealed Lead Acid battery.
SLI battery
Common automotive battery used for ignition ,start lighting etc.
Traction battery
A kind of high power deep cycle secondary battery designed to power heavy mobile equipments ,electric vehicles etc.
Voltage regulator
A voltage regulator is a device used to get a reliable regulated steady voltage . The device generates a fixed output voltage for any changes in input voltage.
VRLA battery
Valve Regulated Lead Acid Battery.
Unit of power,the rate of work done in joules per second ;the energy expended per second by a unvarying electric current of 1 ampere flowing through a conductor ,the ends of which are maintained at a potential difference of 1 volt.
An instrument for direct measurement of power in watts,of an electrical circuit.
Zebra battery
A variety of high temperature Sodium Nickel Chloride battery meant to deliver high power.
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