Serious question:

If lead-acid batteries aren't good for deep-cycle use, then why do most UPSes use them? Do they use a special lead-acid design that's actually ok with deep discharges?

(I'm trying to figure out how to put together a battery-driven portable power-system, at least in theory.)


Two things: 1) I think there are particular kinds of lead-acid batteries meant for deep cycle use but that also 2) the use case for UPSen is that they aren't repeatedly deep cycled, but only drawn down infrequently, if at all.

@woozle checking myself against the Wikipedia article I see they go into more detail, including the idea that it's a trade off between depth-of-discharge and battery life.

For a fixed-site (ie, not mobile) installation size is going to matter less so can better accomodate the need to limit the depth of discharge to 50%. Heavy-but-cheap is just not so much a problem for that application.

Also interesting to see the stuff about recycling:

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@deejoe @woozle I think deep-cycle lead acid batteries can be kept at a high charge without causing problems, and lithium can’t.
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