Silicon Salt Battery

andyrudandyrud Posts: 60Solar Expert ✭✭
I have been reading about these batteries and they seem to be a good fit for solar energy storage.  No acid, no maintenance, long life is claimed by manufacturer.  Backwoods Solar are now carrying them.  Do any of you guys have any opinion of these batteries?

Thanks in advance,
Andy R
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Comments

  • mike95490mike95490 Posts: 6,941Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    never heard of them

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Posts: 2,865Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • andyrudandyrud Posts: 60Solar Expert ✭✭
    Hi Dave, I don't think these are the same as the Aquion batteries.  These come 2 volt, 6 volt, 12 volt.  There encasement look very similar to a normal battery, the Aquion batteries look very unique.
    Andy R
  • Mountain DonMountain Don Posts: 493Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    edited May 2016 #5
    There is an article outlining their experiences with them over a 2 year period. Interesting. Low internal resistance when compared to existing lead acid.
    Northern NM, 624 watts PV, The Kid CC, GC-2 batteries @ 24 VDC, Outback VFX3524M
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Posts: 2,865Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    andyrud said:
    Hi Dave, I don't think these are the same as the Aquion batteries.  These come 2 volt, 6 volt, 12 volt.  There encasement look very similar to a normal battery, the Aquion batteries look very unique.
    Andy R
    I think that there is plenty of confusion with these batteries.
    It would be nice if the store here would make it a little easier to understand.
    Things like how many KWH /AH is useable in 24 hours and at what price/cycle life? It is hard to send them a customer!
    http://www.solar-electric.com/batteries-meters-accessories/batteries/aquion-energy-aqueous-hybrid-ion-batteries.html

    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Posts: 3,831Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Prosine 1800 and Exeltech 1100, ForkLift battery. Off grid for @13 of last 14 years. 1000 watts being added to current CC, @2700 watts to be added with an additional CC.
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Posts: 2,865Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    I read it but the confusion from that gets even worse. They claim to have a lower cost per KWH but it does not look lower to me. It looks like twice the cost over flooded. They claim to not need battery management but the store sells their battery management.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • andyrudandyrud Posts: 60Solar Expert ✭✭
    Dave, you're right.  That is why I posted asking more info on them.  If they are as good as they say they are it would be really good for us off grid people, but, as the saying goes, "let the buyer beware".
  • Mountain DonMountain Don Posts: 493Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    edited May 2016 #10
    Here's the reply to an inquiry I made to backwoods....  ( I don't understand where the yellow highlight came from when I copy/pasted....)

    "You are asking some good questions. I'll try and answer them as best I can. The Silicon Salt batteries do seem to hold a charge better than a traditional flooded lead acid battery. I would say you can certainly go 3-5 months with no major issues. I'm not sure I'm comfortable saying much longer than that. They are still a lead based battery, so they do behave somewhat the same as a Gel battery in some ways. 
    You would set them up with similar parameters to a Gel battery. That is very easy with a Midnite Kid.
    
    You should design them exactly like a Gel in terms of depth of discharge. Deeper discharges will shorten battery life. 
    
    The main advantage of these batteries is for use in high or low temperatures. Or for those folks just looking for a sealed battery.
    
    I hope that helps. As the years go by we will be able to offer a little more insight."
    Northern NM, 624 watts PV, The Kid CC, GC-2 batteries @ 24 VDC, Outback VFX3524M
  • littleharbor2littleharbor2 Posts: 349Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    When the responder refers to Gel batteries I wonder if he actually means gel or might he be referring to AGM. Someone answering technical questions should know the difference here. Gel batteries aren't the best suited for off grid with their charging limitations.

    2.1 Kw Suntech 175 mono, Classic 200, Trace SW 4024 ( 15 years old  but brand new out of sealed factory box Jan. 2015), Bogart Tri-metric, 700 ah @24 volt AGM battery bank. Plenty of Baja Sea of Cortez sunshine.

  • BB.BB. Posts: 25,980Super Moderators admin
    This Silicon Salt battery is starting to sound like the "silicone battery" that we talked a bit about last year:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VRLA_battery
    There are three primary types of VRLA batteries, Sealed VR wet cell, AGM and Gel. Gel cells add silica dust to the electrolyte, forming a thick putty-like gel. These are sometimes referred to as "silicone batteries". AGM (absorbed glass mat) batteries feature fiberglass mesh between the battery plates which serves to contain the electrolyte. Both designs offer advantages and disadvantages compared to conventional batteries and sealed VR wet cells, as well as each other.
    http://www.siliconebatteries.ca/

    They really try hard to avoid talking about the details of these batteries.

    And, this is a Chinese mfg. for Silicon Salt batteries:

    http://www.guineng.com/HTM/Jwork_01.htm

    A lot of the terms used in the above links sounds a lot like what is is described in this patent:

    https://www.google.com/patents/US20040175623

    And the above is still a "GEL" Lead Acid battery (using sulfuric acid?). Perhaps they are using something else besides sulfuric acid in these other batteries...

    This Mfg. link is easier to read the tables--And it looks a lot like Lead Acid chemistry (similar voltages, temperature compensation, etc.).

    http://www.nuglobalnrg.com/sibattery.html

    And sulfur can be used as fertilizer (recycling comments for these batteries):

    http://passel.unl.edu/pages/informationmodule.php?idinformationmodule=1130447045&topicorder=6&maxto=7

    Elemental sulfur is the most concentrated form of sulfur. However, it must be oxidized to the sulfate form before plants can use it. Elemental sulfur must be finely ground to particle sizes of 80-100 mesh to be oxidized and effective during the same growing season. This powdered material is difficult to apply as a fertilizer, since it is not soluble in water or liquid fertilizers. Its dust clings to skin and can make the applicator somewhat miserable for a couple of weeks. It is more often used as a soil amendment by using the strong acidifying effect to replace sodium with calcium on high pH alkali spots.

    Prilled elemental sulfur is not effective unless finely ground sulfur is formed into granules or flakes using additives that bind the small particles together and disintegrate rapidly after soil application. Binding agents include sodium bentonite, sodium sulfate, calcium sulfate (gypsum), and calcium lignosulfate or combinations of these. These flaked materials will contain about 90 percent sulfur. Finely ground or molten sulfur can be added to anhydrous ammonia or to dry fertilizer during manufacturing. Also, finely ground sulfur can be added to suspension fertilizers.
    Don't know anything for sure--But hard to see it not being, more or less, an AGM type lead acid battery--Perhaps with a different electrolyte chemistry (and silica for GEL type electrolyte).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Posts: 2,865Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    I suppose I could dig up the email / owner of the store here. I could even call them. I did drop a note to the admin Rick.
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • BB.BB. Posts: 25,980Super Moderators admin
    I did--NAWS does not have much more to say about the Aquion batteries yet (long lead time, not inexpensive).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • rickrick Posts: 118Administrators admin
    I wish we had more information to offer you guys. We just started carrying the Aquion batteries and we're still learning about them. We became an authorized seller a couple of months ago but so far there hasn't been a lot of interest. I think that's mostly due to the price vs the amount of information and reviews that are available. The company seems very knowledgeable and professional based on my interactions with them. I definitely get the impression that they believe in their product. I'm sure they would be happy to discuss their batteries and answer any of your questions if you contact them directly.

    http://aquionenergy.com/

    Website administrator for Northern Arizona Wind & Sun
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    I just installed two 6V silicon salt batteries, with 220 AH, at my remote cabin. One of the main issues with the AGM batteries I had was rolling in at night to a 0* F cabin. I would have to run my Honda EU2000i all night, for a week, until the batteries warmed enough to hold capacity. I then installed a 6" by 12" orange silicon heater pad (60W) under each one. Using the Honda I could get them to warmed up to 60* F in about six hours. I used one of those nifty lazer 'gun' thermometers to monitor battery temperature. That worked well. However, after about 5 years of doing this, one of my AGM's failed. When I looked underneath the AGM's I saw that the heating pads had begun to burn the plastic structure underneath the batteries (the rectangular and 'X' structure left airspace which cause the heating pads to overheat). They were about 8 years old so I decided to replace them. My solar guy reccommended I consider these new Silicon Salt batteries.
    As you guys know, one claim is that the silicon salt batts are almost impervious to low temperatures. I have been in to the cabin once since install and so far so good. They were 27* F on arrival and performed very well. Further, they readily took a charge from my Vector charger. Once topped off by the charger, they ran my LED lights and another low voltage appliance all night. No heater pads and no Honda except to charge them before I went to bed. Nine hours later, I still had 13V on the Morningstar controller when I made coffee.My AGM's, once warmed up, usually had about 12.3 V in the morning and I had to be careful how many lights I lit. Not with the Silicon Salt batts. The battery temperature in the morning was about 50* F and climbing. When the sun was up, I still had 12.8V.
    Finally, I paid about $10 more for each than new AGM's. I am quite impressed so far. I'll give more reports as time goes on.
    Thanks for this forum. I have learned a lot and you guys have saved me lots of money and aggravation with your generous advice.

    JB
  • bbbuddybbbuddy Posts: 115Solar Expert ✭✭
    edited February 4 #17
    Thorsness, what is the charge/discharge profile on your new batteries? 
  • PNjunctionPNjunction Posts: 750Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Can an average-Joe purchase and install these, or does installation have to be done by "authorized" installers only?

    Is there any problem with degradation from shipping / storage in a slight off-vertical orientation?  I can't recall where I read it, or if this is even a factor at all with these batteries.
  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    If you go to the SILICONE Batt web site  it says they will get them to the nearest deepwater port for you to pick them up...

    Believe me when I say Vancouver BC is not close to their Calgary AB location,..... like Seattle to Denver....  
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    bb buddy and PNJunction,

    i don't know. I bought them from my rural solar-electrical guy. He said the install was very straightforward and I watched him and  it took a few minutes to swap the new batteries for the old AGM's. They are JH Energy YN6-200, 6 volt. I am still trying to get some literature on them. Also, I can't find anything about them on the net. When I get that info, I'll report.
    They look similar to the silicon salt batteries sold now by Backwoods. There is also an article about them on the site, but nothing about a charge/discharge profile. I seem to remember an article that said they are capable of fast charge and discharge without damage. 
    I am headed out to the cabin this week for the Presidents Day Weekend. I'll tell you how they perform.

    Thanks very much as always.

    JB
  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Hmmm  No Google hits for JH Energy YN6-200 6 volt ???? But there is a JH Energy but they are in oil and gas management...
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭

    bbbuddy,

    siliconebatteries.ca/ has an article which claims a 25 minute recharge and 8 second discharge with no damage. It sounds like you would know what this means as a practical matter. I'd be interested to hear you thoughts.

    I also want to find out if "silicon" and "silicone" batteries are the same thing. Thanks.

    westbranch,

    I am emailing my solar system guy again today to get more info about my batteries. Thanks.


    JB

  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Yes, the absence of information is deafening...  but the shipping statement is very similar... love the temp range for operation  and lots of 2 volt cell sizes...
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭

    Here is a link I found. nuglobalnrg.com/sibattery.html

    On page 2 there is a spreadsheet and then on pps 3 & 4 there are performance graphs. Frankly, these batteries seem too good to be true. Time will tell. One consistent review item is low temperature performance.


    JB

  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    I guess the Cdn. supplier gets a fancy GREEN case not the basic Henry Ford colour, Black!

    page 1 that quote again
    For  the  convenience  of  our  customers  we  include  the  shipping cost  to  the  nearest destination sea port in the price of the battery, with minimum orders.
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    My solar guy says the specs on my JH Energy batteries look identical to  the nuglobalnrg batteries. He's looking for literature. I noticed that they call them "silicone."   JB
  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Yes  and it makes a 'BIG difference' to the Google search...totally different results...
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    At the cabin this weekend. It's winter here, not light until 8am and dark at 6:30pm. Yet batteries where fully charged. 24* in the cabin on arrival. Batts were 38* I assume that's from solar charging? They powered my lights all evening and charged IPads and phone all night. Then ran lights until daylight. Solar charging all day (overcast and snowing) then repeated the next night and this am. By today, they were 60* with 13.2 V when I left at 11 am. My AGM's took a week to warm up and that was with lots of Honda generator charging. Very impressed.

    JB
  • mike95490mike95490 Posts: 6,941Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Not sure about the SS batteries, but AGM have such low internal resistance, they have little self-heating.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • westbranchwestbranch Posts: 4,615Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    My AGM's took a week to warm up and that was with lots of Honda generator charging. Very impressed

    tell us more about how many Amps you were putting in?

     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2079/ 2073/ 2054 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,Omnicharge 3024,
    Linksys Wet54g WiFi Bridge, ASUS RTN10 router, Hughes1100 Sat Modem
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • thorsnessthorsness Posts: 51Solar Expert ✭✭✭

    When I arrived Friday at about 11 am, the green light on my Morningstar PS-30 was flashing and I believe was showing 13.8 V. I did not need to use my Honda EU2000i the whole weekend since solar charging sufficed. Keep in mind it was overcast and snowing the whole time. I have two Kyocera solar panels (size unknown) that face south. My Morningstar PS-30 controller registered from .1 to a max of 1.1 charging amps. It may have been slightly higher when I was outside shoveling mid-day. I hope that responds to your question.

    The battery temperature was ten to fifteen degrees above ambient in the cabin when I arrived Friday. In the course of only two days, and again without using those orange silicone heating pads or using my Vector charger, the temps rose to about cabin temperature (I keep them under the stairs sitting on a piece of blue Styrofoam, probably the coolest location in the cabin). This would have taken a week with my AGM'S and required daily charging with the generator and running it during the dark hours.

    JB

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