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Lithium batteries for hybrid cars

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Honda Civic hybrid battery

Have you ever wonder why most of the car manufacturers use lithium batteries for hybrid cars? The main reason why lithium-ion batteries were used in hybrid cars is because the technology allows hybrid cars to travel farther when it turns into electric mode. Other than hybrid cars, lithium-ion battery is also widely used in notebooks and mobile phones.

Hybrid cars are widely use on the market now. It is powered by gasoline and also electric. Hybrid cars engine will recharge the battery when the engine is running on gasoline power. Once the battery is full, the car will run base on only electric mode. Therefore, car makers use lithium batteries for hybrid cars because it is reliable and give long distance.

Some plug-in hybrid cars like Chevrolet Volt can be recharged from wall current in the garage and not only by the engine. Plug-in hybrids are run on electric motors at most of the time. The engine usually works as a backup generator to recharge the batteries when it is needed.

Why use lithium batteries?

1. The cost is cheap and the battery is easy to maintain. The price for a Honda Civic hybrid could be reduce with the move from nickel batteries to lithium batteries.

2. The battery is light and not heavy. Most of the hybrid cars or future cars are getting lighter and lighter.

3. Lithium-ion batteries store more than twice as much energy as the nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries. Lithium-ion batteries are able to store 110 to 130 watt hours per kilogram. This has allowed hybrid cars to have a better range each time the battery is fully charged.

4. The battery is made of solid element, thus it is handy and portable.

5. The speed to charge lithium-ion batteries is fast. It takes less than 6.5 hours to charge the battery pack in a Chevrolet Volt.

6. Life cycle of lithium-ion batteries can be up to 15 years or 150,000 miles which is the average life of a car.

With so many advantages, the usage of lithium batteries for hybrid cars is common for most of the car manufacturers and this technology will at least last for a decade.

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