Alabc Research Providing Sustainability for Lead in Start-Stop Micro-Hybrids

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ALABC Research Providing Sustainability for Lead in Start-Stop Micro-Hybrids

One of the more significant technological advancements in automotive technology has been the development of the start-stop system, which shuts down the internal combustion engine when the car is stationary in order to improve fuel economy. The vehicles that employ these systems, often referred to as “micro-hybrids”, are being produced by automakers as a primary and easily-implementable step toward reduction of both petrol dependency and carbon emissions. They are also considered a boon to the battery industry because start-stop systems impose an even greater demand on the electrical system in order to keep non-critical conveniences and accessories (air conditioning, GPS, etc.) operational while the vehicle is stationary and the engine is shut off.

The introduction of this technology is advancing rapidly in Europe, where emissions regulations are tighter than anywhere else on the planet. In 2011, automakers sold more than 5 million micro-hybrids, and a vast majority of those were in Europe. Lux Research already estimates that number is expected to grow to 39 million by 2017 annually worldwide, and Pike Research estimates sales to reach 41 million by 2020. This paradigm shift in automotive technology is also starting to draw the attention of U.S. automakers, and Lux expects American domestic sales of micro-hybrids to reach 4.6 million annually by 2015.

Although there are a few unconventional battery chemistries being used for start-stop systems, nearly all micro-hybrids employ some form of lead-acid battery, in the form of enhanced flooded (EFB) or valve-regulated absorbent glass mat (AGM) designs. However, the market penetration of these systems might not have happened as rapidly or as successfully without the results of ALABC research.

* Boosting the Performance of EFBs…...

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