Basic Battery Terminology for Solar Power Systems
When reading about deep cycle solar batteries, here are some of the terms you might find used:
AGM: A type of lead acid battery which is known for being maintenance free.
AMP: Unit of measure for electrical current.
Capacity: The amount of energy a battery can hold.
Current: The flow of electricity.
Days of Autonomy: The number of days a battery bank can provide energy for electrical loads before the batteries need to be recharged.
DC: Direct Current is the unidirectional (one way) flow of electric charge. Batteries and solar panels output DC current
Deep Cycle: A deep-cycle battery is a lead-acid battery designed to be regularly deeply discharged using much of its capacity.
Distilled Water: Water that has had most impurities removed by distillation, which involves boiling.
DoD: Depth of Discharge refers to how deeply the battery has been discharged.
Electrolyte: In a battery, electrolyte is a gel or liquid medium that allows electricity to flow.
Flooded: Also referred to as Wet Cell. This is the most common type of lead acid battery. Flooded batteries require regular maintenance.
Hydrogen: A highly flammable gas that can be released when charging batteries.
Hydrometer: A tool used to measure the specific gravity within a flooded lead acid battery.
Specific Gravity: A density ratio between substances. Within a battery, specific gravity is a measurement of the current state of charge.
State of Charge (SoC): State of Charge refers to the percentage of a battery’s total energy capacity that is still available to discharge (use). It is loosely comparable to an automobile’s fuel tank, with 0% being empty and 100% being full.
Volt Meter: A tool to measure electrical volts.
VOLTS: The measure of the force that makes electricity move through a wire.