Traction or motive power refer to applications where the battery energy is used to produce motion, the term “traction” is most commonly used in Europe and “motive power” in USA/UK. The typical application is an electrical forklift.
In the USA, most of motive power batteries are made with flat positive plates.
In all other parts of the world, the dominant technology is based on tubular positive plates (PzS).
The great majority of flooded motive power batteries are nowadays assembled with non-woven gauntlets AS03 for several reasons : lower material cost, lower electrical resistance and less active mass loss through the smaller non-woven fabric pores. This typically leads to higher performance and longer battery life (Reference: Graphe 1)
Moreover, non-woven is ideally suited for dry, wet and slurry filling.
Nevertheless, woven gauntlets are still used by some manufacturers, especially in Asia.
In case of gelled-electrolyte motive power batteries, the alloys used are based on PbCa, no water topping-up is needed and the batteries are so called VRLA(valve regulated lead-acid) or maintenance-free. These batteries are mostly assembled with tubular positive plates as a good compression of the active mass has to be achieved in order to reach a sufficient longevity.
For cycling in gel, besides their traditional woven gauntlets, Amer-sil can recommend reinforced non-woven fabrics to benefit from the non-woven advantages for cycling : AS03A gauntlet in the traditional range.
The Amer-Sil separators are made out of high quality PVC and silica. This gives to the separators the following characteristics: high porosity, instant wettability, low electrical resistance and excellent oxidation resistance.
The composition and design of the material have a great influence on the physical properties of the separator, and especially porosity.
While the extraction pores have an average diameter of 1 micron (mm) for the ribbed patterns, the corrugated separators have larger extraction pores (up to 3 mm) resulting in higher mean pore
size as well as higher overall pore volume.
It leads to a more open structure for corrugated separators and results in optimized physical properties. Especially, the electrical resistance and acid displacement are reduced.
As a consequence, the electrical output of a battery can be optimized by the use of the corrugated version of the Amer-Sil separator.
The figure (Reference: Graphe 2) illustrates the gain in capacity obtained by using a corrugated separator compared to a standard ribbed.
This leads to an improvement in battery performance and an increase in battery life .
The most common patterns are DWN and SGK for tubular plate and DWGT for flat plate.
Additionally, as the PVC used is highly resistant to oxidation, no oil is added to protect the polymer from oxidation. Therefore, any version of the Amer-Sil separator is especially recommended for automatic water-filling systems.