26 February 2013 – First National Battery in South Africa has shifted from the traditional lead-acid battery formation process (the first time charging of a battery) with the introduction of acid recirculation technology. This is for the formation of truck batteries and traction batteries as used in forklifts and mining locomotives, as well as for the formation of solar and gel batteries. This process is now in use at two of its factories in South Africa.
Unlike the normal battery charging process, the system embraces a closed formation process that doesn’t negatively impact the environment with acid fumes. Forming traction batteries individually as cells or as complete batteries in tailor-made fork truck tanks has dramatically cut the delivery time of finished products to customers. The acid recirculation process contributes to reducing the process time in the production of commercial vehicle batteries.
Quality is guaranteed by using a completely digital system that controls acid density and temperature profiles throughout the entire process, resulting in uniform cell to cell voltages. High charging currents are also used which contribute to a shorter battery formation time. Fewer production processes are required, which means less work in progress and no need to carry high stock levels.
These new production units are the first of their kind installed in Africa. They are modular and can be expanded as demand dictates. The process combines uniform and reputable quality with high productivity and high environmental compatibility.
Dr Louis Denner, managing director of First National Battery says, “The charging of batteries with acid recirculation is one of the best inventions of lead-acid battery manufacturing technology in the last two decades.”