PHD Powerhouse – The Myriad Uses of Lithium Ion Batteries

Lithium Batteries, or Lithium Ion Batteries, are used in a wide range of applications. In a high-tech world where technology has far-reaching uses from across the board, these batteries have made great inroads.

Lithium ion batteries are found in many devices such as laptops, cell phones, PDA’s and iPods. Because these batteries are some of the most robust rechargeable batteries, they are commonly used in countless devices.

These batteries stand apart from other more commonly-used batteries as they have a high charge density and high cost per unit, and all depending on the design as well as the chemical combinations and compounds in the batteries, the lithium cells can produce voltages ranging from 1.5 Volts to 3.7 Volts.

Take note that disposable lithium batteries differ from secondary lithium-ion and lithium polymer batteries which are all rechargeable – the ions in these batteries are transferred between the anode and the cathode which uses an interchangeable lithium compound instead of lithium metal as the connection material.

Lithium metal is known to be unstable, especially during the recharging stages; therefore research has shifted to a non-metallic lithium battery whereby lithium ions are commonly used and although lithium-ion batteries are a tad lower in energy density than lithium metal, lithium-ion batteries are a safer option provided certain caution is taken whilst charging or re-charging these batteries.

PHD Powerhouse – Lead Acid Batteries

Lead acid batteries were invented by French physicist Gaston Planté, and have been around since 1859. These are the oldest kind of rechargeable battery and even though they offer a very low ratio of energy-to weight ratio as well as a low energy-to-volume ratio, they are able to supply high currents which results in cells having a relatively large power-to weight ratio.

Lead acid batteries have changed very little over the years although there have been certain upgrades and improvements in the way they are manufactured over time.

Advancements continue to improve in energy density as well as the life of batteries and dependability.

All lead acid batteries have flat lead plates that are submerged in a pool of electrolytes and the regular addition of water is needed for most of these batteries. In today’s modern world lead-acid batteries are basically low-maintenance which are manufactured with excess electrolyte calculations to make up for any water loss during the life of the battery.

Perhaps the most important aspect of lead acid batteries lies in the recharging of these batteries – a converter/charger with single output voltage will certainly not charge the battery correctly.

Correct and proper charging as well as the correct maintenance of lead acid batteries requires intelligent charging system that will take care of battery issues and reduce the maintenance of your lead acid battery

PHD Powerhouse – Fiamm Batteries

FIAMM Batteries are brilliant for telecommunication, UPS, solar systems and for battery back-up.

Because FIAMM batteries have been around for many decades, this range of sturdy batteries boasts being the stalwarts in the battery industry.

The company, which has mass-produced robust batteries since as far back as 1942, is based in Italy and manufactures world-class batteries for a wide range of applications that will take care of uninterruptible power supplies as well as producing batteries for numerous DC systems.

Additionally, FIAMM has footprints in other locations including France, the USA, Czech Republic, China, Brazil and Switzerland, which in itself should say something of the high quality of these batteries.

There are sales and technical branches right across the globe of which about 70% of the turnover of FIAMM comes from the far corners of the world.

With an obligation to continue researching and developing, combined with a passion and resourcefulness for innovation and technological solutions, in line with car makers’ specifications, FIAMM prides itself as a forerunner in the battery industry, and has a strong reputation in terms of product invention and industrious processes.

Needless to say, FIAMM enjoys a worldwide distribution and commercial network for car batteries.

With a guarantee of a long cycling life, these batteries are brilliant in telecom applications; a range of all-purpose batteries specifically created and designed to achieve optimal performance across the board and to protect critical equipment and processes against dips and surges from the power utility.


Using Clean Energy – Renewable Resources

Renewable resources are natural resources that are utilised at a slower rate than they are generated (renewable meaning that it can be used time and again).

These include living reserves such as fish and forests which could last for time immemorial provided they are not over-exploited. Other renewable resources include the wind, water and sun which all assist in generating clean energy, producing minuscule amounts of greenhouse gases once they are put into operation, if any at all, and is commonly referred to as being “clean”.

The challenge is finding ways to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions when dirty energy sources are used to make power and develop the clean energy industry so it supplies more and more of the energy we use.

Governments are exploring numerous ways to apply these renewable resources to meet the growing needs and demands of electricity.

An innovative method of using power without using fossil fuels such as coal is to use wind power, solar power, and hydroelectricity. Environmental organisations and many other institutions as well as individuals are supporting this form of power generation as it could solve a myriad problems, plus it is a considered to be a good source of clean energy.

South Africa boasts having some of the highest levels of sunshine in the world, and little has been done to make use of its power to generate electricity in the past.

This is beginning to change as in the future it is predicted that more than 2, 5 % of the world’s electricity needs will be provided for by solar energy by the year 2025.


Hydroelectricity, using water as a source of clean energy, is also in practice – a good example being The Three Gorges Dam in China which is the largest functioning hydroelectric power plant worldwide, boasting a reservoir of 600 km in length.

There are Three Types of Domestic Solar Systems to Choose From

Did you know that there are three different types of domestic solar power systems to choose from? You are spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting from the wide range of offerings, and for many of us, it all depends on how confident you are regarding going off the grid.

The three types of domestic solar power systems include grid inter-tied, grid inter-tied with a battery backup system, and systems that operate 100% off the grid.

All three systems refer to how they interact with or without traditional electricity obtained from the grid.

There are pros and cons with all three systems.

  •         Grid inter-tied residential solar power systems:

This solar system is directly connected to your residence as well as to your conventional electricity power supplier.

Grid inter-tied systems permit homeowners to obtain power from the utility grid and are able to switch or alternate between grid and solar in a seamless fashion.

The main advantage of the grid inter-tied solar powered system is the capability of pairing the system production and home power requirements perfectly; when the solar system is not producing sufficient power to run the home, power can be drawn directly from the grid.

  •         Grid inter-tied residential solar power systems with battery back-up

The grid inter-tied solar power system is connected to the grid but has a battery back-up system for in case, which really boils down to the system balancing the production of power, whilst protecting the system against any dips and spikes or black-outs and brown-outs from the grid.

  •         Off the grid solar power systems

Off the grid solar power systems are 100% independent and operate self-sufficiently from the utility grid.

This system, however, is dependent on battery power which plays and integral part in the operation of off the grid solar systems, and is especially necessary during periods of extreme production of power and when there is a heightened demand for power.

For all three types of domestic solar power systems it might be advisable to consult with your installer and supplier to find out which one of the three best suits your individual needs and requirements best.

Your Lights Will Stay On With a Turnkey Generator

Our power utility has become unreliable on all levels. For a couple of months the lights will happily stay on, and before long we soon forget how cumbersome and debilitating it is when the lights go out, but then we are subjected to hours and hours of darkness, which renders everything from the digital clock to the internet, useless.

We have come to realise that having Turnkey Generator Systems installed as there is a growing need for households and business from across the board to keep the lights on regardless; if you rely largely on electricity from your utility, as most of us do, then being left in the dark can find us helpless and frustrated, costing our businesses unnecessary down-time.

We need to be prepared when we have black-outs. If you cook on gas, that is one option, but there are so many other issues that need to be addressed when left in the dark.

Turnkey Generator Systems come into play when the power goes out, resulting in little down-time for businesses of all sizes, and homes can happily continue when your generator takes over.

Perhaps you have an ageing parent reliant on oxygen – the power going off can have a huge effect on those that rely on oxygen both at home and in hospitals, as well as the many incubating babies that require electricity to operate.

Don’t become powerless when the light go off – instead become powerful and independent through the use of Turnkey Generator Systems.


Pointers Regarding Din Mount Power Supplies

Din Rails, simply explained, are metal strips of ordinary proportions. The Din Mount provides a user -friendly, speedy method of assembling any combination of electrical and electronic devices into application-specific systems.

Din Mount Power Supplies present compact solutions that are not only flexible, but are compact and completely functional.

Din Mount Rails are fast gaining popularity with controlling industrial systems as well as instrumentation and automation builders.

Suppliers of this hardware have come up with a wide selection of components such as terminals, signal conditioning, relays, and circuit breakers; they also provide a range of starters for motors and programmable logic controllers which can easily be installed and clipped onto the rail to build up an entire arrangement.

Because the systems are compact they are easy on the eye and typically mounted onto a back plate which is placed into and enclosure – perfect for protection of the environment and a great safety feature.

These enclosures are typically installed into outdoor surveillance systems, vehicles and other applications that are exposed to extreme temperatures.

Din Mount Power Rail systems are usually installed close to their applications to ensure their operation run smoothly and safely for long periods of time without having to be supervised.

Take note that these systems are also vulnerable to power events therefore it is imperative that Din power supplies are protected at all times against extreme temperatures and other challenges that could arise.

It Is Important To Select Correct Enclosed Power Supplies

For those that don’t know, there is a fundamental difference between open power supplies and enclosed power supplies, although the differentiation is quite straight-forward and rather a simple one:

The one power supply has an open frame, whereas the other has an enclosed frame which protects it from the elements. These are the two fundamental differences, and the options are endless.

You might ask the question – why would someone choose the open-frame power supply instead of an enclosed power supply, whilst risking damage to the supply and/or  being shocked? We need to take one important factor into consideration, and that is cooling off of the system.

Bear in mind that an open-framed system cools off a lot faster than an enclosed-framed system would.

Some of the choices of an open-framed system include linear, single or multiple-output as well as vital medical switching.

Enclosed power supplies offer high quality enclosed universal AC input switching power supplies, which have both over- current and short-circuit protection.

With enclosed power supplies, the voltage is adjustable – this is in the region of +/-10%.

It is imperative to only ever use professionals to connect the primary voltage which has to be carried out by a qualified electrician for safety purposes.

Enclosed power supplies offer “over current” protection; should the connected circuit draw an excessive amount of current the power supply will simply shut off. When the system is in this mode the green LED light will either glow very dimly or not at all.

Once you reboot the system this will reset the fault by temporarily removing the AC power to get it up and running once again.

Five Useful Things You Need To Know about Your Surge Protection Device

Don’t let surges ruin your expensive and sensitive equipment. Being forearmed is smart – ensure you do the shrewd thing by investing in a surge protection device.

But not everyone understands exactly how a surge protection device actually works; for those individuals that are keen to learn more and would like to become familiar with these devices, here are five useful things you ought to know about surge protection to gain maximum benefit at all times.

  • In a nutshell, your surge protection device which could also be referred to as a surge diverter or surge suppressor, has been created specifically to safeguard electrical devices from spikes in voltage. The general idea is for the surge protector to reduce and limit the voltage that is supplied to any electrical device either by shorting any unwanted voltage to the ground or by blocking it altogether – always above a safe threshold.


  • For those individuals and businesses that live in an area exposed to high levels of lightning, a surge protection device is not a luxury but rather a necessity.


  • Your surge protection device is an inexpensive method to ward off damage or disruption to all that expensive electronic equipment you invested in.


  • Downtime is also drastically reduced by making use of surge protection devices.


  • There are so many theories on what element, what topology, and the deployment of specific technology used to produce the best SPD for diverting surge current; do your homework to find the one that fits your needs best.


Some of the causes of SPD devices are primarily caused by installation errors, the misapplication of a product to a voltage rating and continued over-voltage incidents.

Eco-Friendly Batteries

To get the most out of your eco-friendly renewable energy system for home or back-up power, you need a rugged, long-lasting solar photovoltaic battery. Scientists have created solar-flow batteries that use an eco-friendly batteries option, compatible solvent and needs a lower applied voltage to recharge the battery.

Energy generation from a solar-flow battery is said to be far more cost-effective, eco-friendly, and can achieve energy savings of as much as 20% compared to the run-of-the-mill lithium-iodine batteries. Solar-flow batteries are eco-friendly and make renewable solar energy more realistic for keeping the lights on as well as devices running with stand-alone electricity generation and storage.

About aqueous solar-flow batteries:

Solar enthusiasts will now be in a position to enjoy more efficient, eco-friendly electricity generation with these solar-flow batteries, which is a combination of a redox-flow battery and a dye-sensitised solar cell through the use of compatible water-based solvents (aqueous).

The aqueous solar-flow battery performs really brilliantly and is more cost-effective and eco-friendly than those based on organic solvents. The aqueous solar-flow battery could, in all probability, elucidate the intermittency inadequacies of renewable energy and keep the lights on and appliances running efficiently and for longer periods of time.

Solar energy is harvested and stored as chemical energy during the charging process, and when the time is right to recharge the battery, the quantity of energy required is a lot lower than the more conventional lithium-iodine type of batteries – this is primarily due to the dye molecules that are exposed to the sun, providing electrons to the charging process.