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Information @ a Glance

General

  • VRLA is Valve-Regulated Lead-Acid Battery and is the designation for maintenance-free lead-acid batteries.

  • Other frequently used names for VRLA cells & batteries are AGM – VRLA: Absorptive Glass Mat VRLA and Tubular Gel – VRLA.

  • VRLA batteries use much less electrolyte (battery acid) than traditional lead-acid batteries.

  • These batteries are often colloquially called sealed lead-acid batteries.

  • The primary distinction between the VRLA and the Flooded Cell is the quantity of electrolyte incased in each cell.

  • VRLA batteries are least expensive and can be more reliable than flywheels for the first few years but that reliability will be compromised without proper site design & care.

  • VRLA batteries can be either gel cell type or absorbent mat type in construction.

Application

  • VRLA batteries are frequently employed in UPS (uninterruptible power supply) or other high-rate applications.

  • Long duration applications such as telecommunications are not as well-suited to VRLA batteries.

  • VRLA batteries found in a typical remote configuration have a life expectancy of two to eight years, regardless of design life.

  • The advanced lead acid battery proposed for use in electric and hybrid electric vehicles is a totally maintenance free design using the valve regulated lead acid battery (VRLA) technology.

  • VRLA batteries can be used in environments where flooded batteries typically cannot be used such as Huts, CEVs, and distributed cabinets.

  • VRLA” batteries, are more reliable in controlled ambient applications.

Technology

  • VRLA batteries can present several technologies such as: 1.Absorbed glass mat battery, 2.Gel battery.

  • Batteries for uninterruptible power systems (UPS) are almost universally of the lead acid type and are of one of the following three technologies: 1. Vented (Flooded or Wet Cells), 2. Valve Regulated (VRLA), 3. Modular Battery Cartridges (MBC).

  • The most mature battery systems are based on lead-acid technology.

  • Perhaps one of the most promising and near term of all UPS battery technologies is Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH)

  • The sealed VRLA battery technology is a closed system in which the quantity of electrolyte is limited, but the gases resulting from energy production are recombined to be reused instead of being released to the atmosphere.

  • GNB Technologies incorporates improvements in battery materials, manufacturing processes, and quality control.

Market

  • VRLA batteries entered the market in the 1980s and were seen as the perfect solution for remote wireless sites.

  • VRLA batteries were first introduced into UPS applications in America and Europe in the 70’s because of their low maintenance requirements and high reliability over traditional flooded lead-acid.

  • The rapid growth in telecommunication and computer networks throughout the world during the 80’s created a huge market for this battery type.

  • Advances in VRLA batteries and rising gasoline prices over the past decade have made e-bikes increasingly competitive with gasoline scooters in price and performance.

  • Most of the world’s small VRLAs (<25Ah) are manufactured in Asia and exported around the world due to low labor costs, land cost, and loose environmental standards.

  • Many of the large leisure motorcycles in Japan, the USA and Europe use VRLA technology; Taiwan too. But these are expensive batteries for a minor section of the market.

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