NCA batteries: properties and usage
NCA battery stands for Lithium nickel cobalt aluminum oxide based battery (LiNiCoAlO2). Also, NCA batteries are becoming more and more important in in-grid storage and electrical power terrain applications.
Lithium-ion batteries and concept
The most popular technology of the battery sector currently is the of the lithium ion battery. Relative to other types of batteries, lithium ion batteries have better energy, power density and higher cycling ability. These qualities are extremely important in the use in modern applications like electrical and hybrid vehicles and most importantly energy storage systems which are used in the renewable energy applications.
The lithium ion batteries chemistry is the same across the different lithium-ion battery types; during discharge, Lithium-ions move to the positive cathode from the negative anode through the organic electrolyte. The anodes in all various technologies of lithium ion are all made from graphite. The differences are the cathode which contains changing cobalt, nickel or manganese concentrations. All various cathode types allow high lithium insertion and intercalation levels which result in large energy storage quantities.
NCA battery technology and applications
NCA (Lithium nickel cobalt aluminum oxide) battery was invented in the year 1999. Its anode material is LiaC6, the cathode material is LibNi0.8Co0.15Al0.05O2 and the carrier is Li+. It is used in different applications like power grid applications, medical devices and electric cars. Most notably Tesla deploys NCA batteries in their electric vehicles system. NCA batteries can store the same amount of energy as NMC.
NCA batteries are not widely common in the consumer industry, but are quite promising in the electric car industry.
Advantages and disadvantages of NCA batteries
The main advantages of the NCA batteries are:
- High specific energy
- Reasonably good specific power
- Long life span
- NCA cathodes contain the most energy amount by weight and volume (as NMC).
The main disadvantages of the NCA batteries are:
- Less safety than other Li-ion battery types (they require extra safety features and circuits for use in electric cars for example)
- Higher cost in comparison to other Li-ion battery types