By Keith Schneringer
Lithium-Ion Batteries – In Your Phone, In Your Laptop -- and on Mars?
Lithium-ion batteries are seemingly all around us – they are the batteries which power our cell phones, tablets, gaming consoles, laptop computers, and cordless power tools, and they are even being used to power many of the hybrid and full electric vehicles which are increasingly making their way on to our roads.
The technology is even being used in outer space to power NASA’s Mars Rovers (both Spirit and Opportunity, as well as Curiosity) as they explore the terrain and take images of Mars in our ongoing efforts to answer age-old questions about how planets are formed and if there is indeed life beyond Earth!
Why are lithium-ion batteries being used in all of these applications?
The widespread usage of this type of battery is given to the fact that lithium-ion batteries have “an unmatchable combination of high energy and power density, making it the technology of choice for portable electronics, hybrid tools, and hybrid/full electric vehicles” according to an article posted on ScienceDirect – and because of its “light weight, high energy density and ability to recharge” according to a webpage on the US Department of Energy website.
The cleaning industry has been accustomed to using other battery technologies for cleaning equipment– such as lead acid or “wet” batteries, and AGM/gel or “sealed” batteries – and these batteries are well accepted and prevalent. There are some undeniable benefits to using something that is tried and true, and familiar.
But what if a lithium-ion battery – and all the inherent benefits of this technology – could be used to power an autoscrubber, or even a backpack vacuum?
Hello Lithium-Ion Batteries
Now cleaning equipment exists in the market which utilizes lithium-ion battery technology!
BENEFITS – Autoscrubbers and Burnishers:
- Lasts up to 8x longer than traditional batteries
- Maintains a longer run time over the life of the battery
- Requires virtually no maintenance, thus eliminating the need to train staff on proper ongoing battery maintenance (as well as the subsequent need to replace batteries when they are not properly maintained)
- Allows for ability to charge batteries at user’s convenience without worrying about wasting charging cycles
BENEFITS – Cordless Backpack Vacuums:
- Offers 30% increase in productivity and mobility when compared to corded backpack vacuums – and 5x increase in productivity when compared to upright vacuums
- Eliminates restrictions of a power cord, and associated cord management tasks
- Offers fast charging
- Provides lightweight battery-powered option
Keith Schneringer is WAXIE’s Director of Channel Marketing + Sustainability. He is a LEED AP O+M and CIMS-GB ISSA Certification Expert who has been a consultant on a variety of LEED and CIMS-GB projects, and has presented to audiences at USGBC, BOMA, IFMA and CHESC events (among others). He enjoys learning and sharing information on topics related to sustainability and green cleaning and can be found on Twitter @kschneringer.