A lithium-ion battery is a lightweight, high-power battery used in computers and mobile phones. It comes in several shapes, although a flat rectangle is most common. It is lighter than the nickel cadmium battery and the nickel metal-hydride battery. That makes it useful for devices that should be lightweight. Lithium-ion batteries work by the movement of lithium ions through a membrane (thin sheet that allows some substances to pass through). They are different from lithium batteries. Lithium batteries contain lithium metal and are not rechargeable (primary cells). Lithium-ion batteries do not contain lithium metal (only lithium compounds) and are rechargeable (secondary cells). They also do not last forever. Traditional lithium-ion batteries will have an average of 600 charge cycles. Some newer versions such as lithium iron phosphate and lithium titanate can last for 3000 cycles or more.
Safety issues change
Lithium-ion batteries can be very dangerous. They can catch fire or explode if they are punctured, overcharged, or short-circuited, or if there is a manufacturing defect. In a multi-cell battery pack, the fire can spread from one cell to another, consuming the entire pack. The fire cannot be put out with a fire extinguisher or water. Flaming electrolyte can be ejected from the battery, setting fire to nearby combustible material. Many products have been recalled due to defective lithium-ion batteries.