Approximately 15 million tons of lithium reserves have been estimated in the world, while 65 million tons of known resources are reasonable. The Global demand for lithium metal is expected to increase to 49,350 metric tons by 2019 and 8.9 percent per year. The largest lithium producing country in the world is Chile with 14,100 tons secondly Argentina with the production of 5,500 tons and the third largest lithium producing country is China with 3,000 tons.
We can reasonably expect that as market demand of lithium is increasing and so the lithium reserves and resources will increase too. But we can expect to reach a peak in production at some point, as with all finite resources. However, we can use the recycled lithium in batteries as there is no as such rule to use pure lithium metal in batteries of such devices. While lithium-ion batteries are helpful in encouraging some green actions, it should be remembered that the batteries themselves are not yet "environmentally friendly." Nevertheless, compared to the alternative of using fossil fuels, lithium batteries are far ahead.
Common consumer batteries such as laptops, cell phones, tablets and power tools are typically the devices in which lithium ion batteries are used. In order to calculate the content of lithium in a battery given formulas shown below should be used which is also very necessary for those shipping lithium batteries of industrial, military or larger format.
For non-rechargeable lithium ion batteries
a)Calculate lithium content (grams).
· The formula used to calculate lithium content is:
Ah per cell * 0.3 grams * no. of cells
· Most batteries are not measured in ampere hours (Ah), they are rated in milli-ampere hours (mAh). Milliampere hour is an ampere hour one thousandth.
· Divide the mAh by 1,000 to calculate the Ah.
Example: The battery you want to ship is rated at 2,500 mAh per cell and contains 6 cells:
· Divide 2,500 mAh by 1,000 to be rated in Ah:
2,500 mAh ÷ 1,000 = 2.5 Ah
· To determine amount of lithium in each cell multiply Ah by 0.3:
0.3 * 2.5 Ah = 0.75 gms of lithium in each cell.
· Now, Multiply the quantity of lithium in each cell by the number of cells in each battery:
0.75 gms / cell * 6 = 4.5 grams of lithium in the battery
Conclusion: 4.5 g for battery packs is below the total permitted lithium content of 25 g; therefore, the battery can be delivered in the Big Green Box.
For rechargeable lithium ion batteries
Calculate Rated Capacity (watt hour)
· The formula that is used to determine the rated capacity is:
Volts * ampere hour (Ah) = watt hours
· Many batteries are not rated in ampere hours (Ah), they are rated in milliampere hours (mAh). Milliampere hours is an ampere hour one thousandth.
· Divide the mAh by 1,000 to determine the Ah.
Example: The battery pack you want to ship is rated at 11.1 volts and 4,400 mAh per cell:
· Divide 4,400 mAh by 1,000 to be rated at Ah:
4,400 mAh ÷ 1000 = 4.4 Ah ·
· To calculate the watt hours in this battery, multiply 11.1 volts by 4.4 ampere hours:
11.1 V x 4.4 Ah = 48.8 Wh
Conclusion: 48.8 Wh for battery packs is below the total allowable rated capacity of 300 Wh; hence the battery can be delivered in the Big Green Box.