THE latest development in valve regulated traction battery technology has been designed and manufactured in Australia.
After five years of research and development, Brisbane-based battery manufacturer, Century Batteries has commenced producing 225A/h and 450A/h batteries at its Wacol production facility.
While other valve regulated batteries for forklifts have been an adaptation of standby batteries, Century Batteries has designed a purpose-built forklift battery that requires no regular maintenance.
Using proven tubular plate technology, the Century valve regulated tubular (VRT) battery has been made for the Australian conditions. They are suitable for pallet truck users who need to eliminate maintenance or acid spills from their workplace.
According to national marketing manager Murray Craig, the wait for this Australian-made product will be worthwhile.
"We had a lot of pressure on us to quickly develop or source a valve regulated battery back when they initially hit the market,” he said.
“While we could see real benefits for pallet truck users with genuine safety or maintenance concerns, we were greatly concerned about the promises being made regarding the use of these batteries in reach truck and other heavy-duty applications.
"Our concerns proved to be correct with many users being greatly disappointed with the discharge and life-cycle performance of the early valve regulated batteries.
“The market is now more realistic with its expectations of this technology,” he said.
“This market acceptance and our use of the proven tubular plate technology give us great confidence that our locally-made product will be received enthusiastically by pallet truck users," added Murray.
The Century VRT battery will save users significant time by eliminating the need to add water and take specific gravity readings. Another significant benefit is the elimination of acid spills. Acid can cause corrosion of pallet trucks and is a genuine safety concern when maintaining traditional traction batteries.
The new battery can be charged by the Century PEI fully-regulated, temperature compensated charger, which protects against overcharging damage.
The tubular plate design of the Century VRT is the preferred technology of the major traction battery producers in the world. There is less corrosion of the positive plate and minimal shedding of active material, all of which provides superior cycling performance and battery life.
Century Batteries supplies a complete range of motive power batteries and associated products throughout the Oceania region.
It manufactures its tubular plate traction batteries in Brisbane and has an extensive branch network and field service infrastructure throughout Australia and New Zealand.