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Nickel/Zinc Batteries: Safer Alternative to Lead-Acid and Lithium-Ion

By Dick Weisinger

The rechargeable Nickel/Zinc battery was patented by Thomas Edison in 1901 but ran into a problem with charging and was never able to bring the battery to market. In 1993, Morris Eisenberg at Stanford created an electrolyte that increased NiZn battery life.

NiZn batteries have become a competitive alternative to other more common batteries, like lithium-ion batteries. In fact, compared to lithium-ion, NiZn batteries have advantages of safety, power, fast charging, recyclability, and long life.

Steve Jennings, senior vice president at ZincFive, wrote that “NiZn technology has emerged as the best choice for replacing lead-acid batteries in data center backup. With high power density and smaller size and weight, as well as longer life and higher temperature operation, NiZn-based batteries are the heart of reliable high-performance UPS. These batteries are safer to operate and a greener alternative than both lead-acid and lithium-ion backup options. Overall, NiZn technology can help data center operators lower the TCO of data center backup.”

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