Saft Announces Development Of Ni-Cd Battery For Telecom Equipment Installed In OSP Cabinets

September 18, 2008 by Jeff Shepard

Saft announced the development of its new Tel.X battery, described as the first high-volumic energy density, long-life, maintenance-free nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) battery designed specifically to ensure maximum reliability and optimum TCO (total cost of ownership) for telecom equipment installed in OSP (outside plant) cabinets.

In the past 10 years, over 1.5 million of Saft’s NCX range of Ni-Cd cells have been deployed in OSP cabinets. Saft states that it has used this experience to identify several design improvement opportunities for the evolution of Ni-Cd technology to meet the challenges posed by changing OSP applications.

Field experience with the NCX design was combined with the current requirements of OSP applications and a set of design specifications were developed for the new Tel.X battery. The main objective was to put at least 40% more battery capacity into the same OSP cabinet compartment. This also had to be accomplished while maintaining all of the other proven advantages of Ni-Cd, such as long-life, reliability and resistance to abuse. The evolution also aimed to make the new battery maintenance-free, fast to install and improve its compatibility with GR-3108 Class 3 requirements where the dirtiest, wettest and most extreme temperatures are expected.

It is claimed that the new Tel.X battery offers high-volumic energy density of up to 100 Wh/L while weighing around 30% less than a conventional battery. It is designed for use in standard 19" and 23" racks and cabinets, where its compact size is said to make it easy to fit and install as a direct replacement for VRLA batteries – a typical installation time for a 48 V battery is just 15 minutes and is compatible with all telecoms rectifiers.

Another key feature of the Tel.X is its exceptionally long service life, over 20 years in normal temperatures and more than 14 years at +40°C. In many cases the battery can be expected to outlive the installation, during which time it will be maintenance-free, under normal operating conditions, with no need for topping-off with water.

The Tel.X battery design has been certified for compliance to NEBS (Network Equipment Business Systems) Level 3, which is the world’s highest safety level for telecom equipment. Furthermore, the Tel.X delivers predictable performance over a wide temperature range, from -20 to +40°C, and can withstand extremes of -50 to +70°C. This is particularly important as the majority of cabinet installations will not offer a temperature-controlled environment.

Saft’s Tel.X batteries will be available in industrial series production in October 2008.