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Monitoring electrolyte levels in VLA batteries

Midtronics, proudly represented locally by Comtest, announced the availability of an innovative solution for critical power reliability with the release of the CellGuard ELS+ Electrolyte Level Monitoring System.

This customer-driven product assures reliable 24/7 monitoring of VLA (vented lead-acid) battery electrolyte levels and is easily integrated into a battery management system for VLA battery maintenance. The ELS+ monitoring system is commonly used in reserve power applications for backup power in utilities, telecom and grid energy storage.

Strict monitoring is essential for VLA batteries to ensure optimal performance and a long operating life. VLA batteries (also called flooded batteries) continuously deplete their electrolyte by outgassing hydrogen and oxygen. Distilled water must be added to the battery as part of its maintenance. The lead plates inside the battery must be fully immersed in electrolyte in order to operate at optimal level. Once gassing occurs and plates are exposed, they become inactive, reducing battery capacity.

The ELS+ is an innovative solution to the age-old issue of monitoring electrolyte levels in flooded lead-acid batteries. It directly addresses a need within several markets, including the electric power market that now faces new requirements on infrastructure performance, in a simple and cost-effective package. The system integrates into commercially available data collection systems and is compatible with clear cased VLA batteries of any voltage, size or design. It is modular and features quick connect cabling for time saving installation.

The system is simple to install, and is completely non-invasive to the battery. It saves time and money by eliminating the need for manual inspection. The ELS+ enhances safety by reducing the frequency of close contact with batteries and battery acid, in addition to providing alarming when battery case temperatures reach abnormal levels.

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