Views: 204 Author: Hedy Publish Time: 2023-05-23 Origin: Site
Image of a lithium ion battery
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Lithium-ion batteries power most electronic devices around the globe. However, you may have encountered certain consumer electronics with a lithium polymer battery.
While it might not be immediately evident, there's a significant difference between lithium-ion (Li-ion) and lithium-polymer (Li-Po) batteries.
In this article, we take an in-depth look at these popular battery types and how they power the devices we use in our everyday lives.
Image of the specifications of a lithium ion battery
The lithium-ion battery powers smartphones, laptops, and numerous other devices around the globe. These batteries are made by combining four different components:
A cathode (the positive terminal)
The anode is mostly made of lithium (thus the name), while the cathode is often made from graphite. Cobalt or manganese are often used as well.
The separator prevents the charges from causing a short-circuit, and the electrolyte serves as the medium that allows the ions to move from the anode to the cathode.
Thus, when you charge your phone, ions stored on the negative terminal begin to vibrate until they gain enough charge to make the journey from the anode to the cathode, overcoming the separating layer. This movement is what generates the electricity that powers your device. As your battery discharges, the ions move back to the cathode.
Image of devices that include LiPo batteries
A lithium-polymer battery is slightly newer than the conventional lithium-ion battery, and it wasn't until recently that Li-Po batteries were introduced to smartphones. It's one of the most promising alternatives to lithium-ion batteries.
The primary reason for this was because of their fast charging capabilities. Lithium-polymer batteries were originally used in older, clunky phones and were found in laptops. Modern devices, like drones, also contain lithium-polymer batteries. Because it's so flexible and lightweight, lithium-polymer batteries are found in power banks too.
Just like lithium-ion batteries, Li-Po batteries also have an anode and a cathode. But, these batteries use a gel-like electrolyte instead of a liquid electrolyte.
That's one of the reasons why they are generally more durable, and you don't have to worry about the electrolyte leaking too. But, this gel-like material tends to get harder over time, reducing the ions' ability to move freely, reducing the battery life span.