Sharing battery knowledge
The institution for Learning the basics about batteries. In each of the short commentaries you will read about the best battery choices, new battery technologies and ways to make your batteries last longer. Practical, down-to-earth battery information is sometimes hard to find. Battery manufacturers are often too optimistic with their promises and only emphasize positive features.
I have a background in radio communications and studied the behavior of rechargeable batteries in practical, everyday applications for several decades. In desiring to share this battery knowledge with you; I wrote several articles addressing the strength and limitations of the battery. These articles have been published in various trade magazines in the USA, Canada and Europe. I later compiled the material and wrote my first book entitled Batteries in a Portable World - A Handbook on Rechargeable Batteries for Non-Engineers.
The 88-page first edition appeared in 1997 and covered such topics as the memory effect of nickel-cadmium batteries and how to restore them. Some readers commented that I favored nickel-cadmium over nickel-metal-hydride. Perhaps this observation is valid and I have taken note. Having been active in the mobile radio industry for many years, much emphasis is placed on battery longevity, a quality that is true of nickel-cadmium. Today's battery users prefer small size and want maximum runtime. Longevity may be less important, especially in the fast-moving consumer market.
The second edition of Batteries in a Portable World was published in 2001. With 18 Chapters and 300 pages, this book has been extended to include new battery technologies and various field applications.
In May 2001, the Battery Information Website www.buchmann.ca was launched, making the contents of the book available to the world at large. Battery articles have been added to complement the book and serve readers of non-English languages. A search engine was installed to help you find topics of interest. The Battery Information Website is sponsored by Cadex Electronics Inc., the manufacturer of advanced battery analyzers chargers and PC software.
Out of sheer curiosity, I conducted a statistical analysis at the end of the year to find out which battery topics in the book are being requested most often. The winners are:
Number 1. Getting the Most from your Batteries Chapter 10
Number 2. Proper Charge Methods Chapter 4
Number 3. Internal Battery Resistance Chapter 9
Number 4. Choosing the Right Battery Chapter 8
Number 5. The 'Smart' Battery Chapter 7
Getting the Most from your Batteries has consistently been first choice. People want to know how to care for their batteries to get maximum runtime and dependable service. Proper Charge Methods is also very much in the hearts of the battery users. A surprise was Internal Battery Resistance in third position. This subject is of growing concern with digital equipment that puts high demands on the battery. A seemingly good battery often fails to deliver the heavy current bursts because of elevated internal resistance caused by aging batteries.
Battery University is based on the book Batteries in a Portable World and will address such issues as the choice of battery chemistries, physical battery packs, charge and discharge methods, runtime concerns, the 'smart' battery, internal battery resistance, getting the most of your batteries and much more.
Batteries in a Portable World is written for the non-engineer. It addresses the use of the toshiba battery in the hands of the general public, far removed from protected lab environments of the manufacturer. Some information contained in this book was obtained through tests performed in Cadex laboratories; other knowledge was gathered by simply talking to diverse groups of battery users. Not all views and opinions expressed in the book are based on scientific facts. Rather, they follow opinions of the general public, who use batteries. Some difference of opinion with the reader cannot be avoided. I would like to hear your comments on Battery University. After all, battery technology is not black and white but has many shades of gray. I hope you will find these lessons interesting and helpful.
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