Information on batteries and accumulators

Information on batteries and accumulators

Batteries and accumulators are used in a great variety of equipment around us. Below we attempt to explain their various uses and describe how to identify different types of batteries. Batteries come in all sizes and shapes. Button cells and round batteries are probably the most common battery types.

What is a battery?

A "battery" normally refers to a product that stores chemical
energy which can be converted into electrical energy (e.g. in a flashlight). A battery is a combination of two or more electrochemical cells.

An exploded view of an ordinary 9V battery gives a clear picture
of battery structure (9V batteries are used e.g. in smoke
detectors).

The battery consists of six 1,5 volt cells in series to make nine
volts. According to the international IEC standard the battery designation is 6LR61 (6: 6 cells, L: alkaline, R: round, 61: type number), and according to the American ANSI standard the battery designation is 9V.

The four most common battery types in the market are:

Codes: IEC/ANSI are LR03/AAA, LR06/AA, LR14/C, LR20/D.

These refer to alkaline batteries, the corresponding IEC codes for manganese batteries, currently less common, are R3/R6/R14/R20.

What is an accumulator?

An accumulator (rechargeable battery, storage battery) is usually a pack of two or more secondary cells, covered by a shell. The sizes and shapes of accumulators vary a lot.

Battery cells can simply be covered with heat-shrink sock or, in the industry, attached with tape.

Secondary battery cell types and sizes are standardised by IEC. The same applies to primary batteries.