The high capacity energy carrier element and an integral component in an aircraft called heavy batteries was developed to power aircrafts in the early nineteenth century. With the advent of innovations in technology, by the end of the 20th century, battery technology underwent several developments; for example, nickel-cadmium rechargeable batteries (NiCad) were introduced. Different types of batteries are developed today. Few of the types of batteries include lead acid battery, nickel-cadmium battery, nickel-metal hydride battery, lithium-ion/lithium-polymer battery and lithium metal battery. The lead acid batteries, either valve regulated or vented, are heavy with low energy density and are often used in aircrafts as the main battery. Nickel-cadmium batteries require very low maintenance, have a wide operating range and are reliable. Nickel-metal hydride batteries are the ideal batteries for higher requirements w.r.t capacity as they possess high energy density.
In aircrafts, they are generally used to power complementary systems such as emergency doors, entertainment devices and escape path lighting. Lithium-ion and lithium-polymer batteries are rechargeable and are called as lithium secondary batteries. Lithium-metal batteries are lithium primary batteries and are non-rechargeable.
The choice of battery used in an aircraft depends upon the type of aircraft and the feasibility quotient of the battery in alignment with the usability in that aircraft. Big air carriers and helicopters use nickel-cadmium batteries; small aircrafts and some business jets use valve regulated lead acid batteries (VRLA) and nickel-cadmium batteries. The global aerospace battery technology market is expected to experience good growth potential in the forecasted period.
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Aerospace Battery Technology Market: Growth Drivers
Due to increased fuel costs in aviation, manufacturers are compelled to develop fuel efficient air carriers and also adopt the MEA (More Electric Aircraft) concept. In the MEA concept, all the main functions in an aircraft would be driven electrically. The manufacturers would be investing in technologies that provide efficiency; are highly reliable; have lower maintenance costs; and are less hazardous. Weight reduction is another upcoming trend and is creating the need for advanced battery technology. Lithium-ion is a possible option serving this change. Low self-discharging ability of batteries contribute to the growth of the global aerospace battery technology market. The adoption of technologies that are reliable, fuel efficient and have low maintenance; along with an increase in the number of aircraft carriers has accelerated the growth of the global aerospace battery technology market.
Aerospace Battery Technology Market: Growth Restraints & Challenges
Challenges associated with the global aerospace battery technology market are owing to the limitations of the batteries used in aircraft carriers. Limitations such as battery leakages, battery internal short circuit causing battery failure, explosions due to overcharging of the batteries, excessive charging rates resulting in fuming and battery over discharge are major hindrances challenging the growth of the global aerospace battery technology market. To solve the problems caused due to the abovementioned battery limitations, more cost needs to be incurred and also the system needs high maintenance, thereby increasing the maintenance costs. These restraints are hampering the growth of the global aerospace battery technology market.
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Aerospace Battery Technology Market: Key Regions
Regions such as North America, Europe, APEJ, Japan, China, Latin America, Middle East and Africa are likely to show good growth movements with respect to the global aerospace battery technology market. The U.S market dominates the North America region. North America has shown a steady growth rate and is expected to lead in the global aerospace battery technology market. Eastern and Western European regions are striving to restore their hold in the battery technology for aircraft carriers, thereby showing potential growth indications in the global aerospace battery technology market. The Asia Pacific region is expected to grow at a higher rate during the forecast period; China showing signs to be the key market followed by India and Japan in the global aerospace battery technology market.
Aerospace Battery Technology Market: Key Manufacturers
Some of the manufacturers operating in the global aerospace battery technology market include the SAFT Group, Eagle Picher Technologies, Concorde Battery Corporation, TransDigm Group Inc. and EnerSys.
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