Industrial Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries
NiMH Batteries for Industrial and OEM Applications
Nickel based batteries are a popular choice due to their low cost, durability and simple transportation due to not being subject to regulatory control. This chemistry type can offer a wider operating temperature range than some lithium derivatives making them suitable for a broad range of industrial applications.
Commonly used in applications that require fairly low discharge rates, and where cost is a key factor, this chemistry is popular for use in power tools, pulse instrumentation, and other electronic devices.
Battery Protection & Management Circuits
To help increase the safety of NiMH batteries and also extend service life a protection circuit is recommended to regulate current within safe levels. VPW has extensive experience with stand-alone and integrated PTC (positive temperature coefficient) protection devices as well as PCM (protection circuit modules).
PTC – Positive Temperature Coefficient Thermistor
The PTC device is the most common means of protection for NiMH batteries and is often also referred to as a resettable fuse or polymeric positive temperature coefficient device (PPTC). Available in a wide variety of ratings and styles to fit virtually any application the PTC provides temporary over current protection with auto recovery.
PCM – Protection Circuit Modules
The PCM is a fairly simple and straightforward protection device, which does not require software integration allowing for rapid development keeping costs to a minimum.
Some of the features available for NiMH Protection Circuit Modules include:
- Over discharge protection
- Over current protection
- Over temperature protection
- Fuel Gauge
BMS – Battery Management Systems
The BMS typically handles the same protections found with PCMs and incorporates a microprocessor, which allows for additional monitoring, control and reporting of a wide variety of parameters based on specific customer requirements. Through integrated software users can gain real time access to an abundance of data through a variety of protocols include the common I2C and CAN bus. While not common for NiMH projects VPW can offer a custom tailored BMS for your next NiMH project.
In addition to the features found with PCMs, some of the features available for Battery Management Systems include:
- Current sensing & limiting
- Temperature monitoring
- State of charge and state of health monitoring
- Voltage monitoring
- Internal resistance monitoring