You’ve swapped batteries hundreds of times without giving it a second thought. From TV remotes to smoke alarms, standardized batteries have been part of daily life for decades.
However, there are many battery-operated devices used every day that don’t have swappable batteries. Cell phones and electric vehicles are the most common examples of rechargeable batteries that can’t be swapped out. As companies push for sustainable, clean energy solutions, rechargeable batteries are gaining prominence in manufacturing across multiple industries.
Battery Swap Technology
For battery swapping to work, there needs to be a standard battery shape and size. This works well in home electronics. Standard sizes and shapes have been used for decades. From AA to D, you can head out to the store to find a replacement for these batteries. However, these offer limited power and storage capabilities. This becomes a problem when you consider the needs of larger electronics such as EV batteries.
Modern technology has developed lithium-ion batteries, allowing for a large amount of energy to be stored in a relatively small package. These batteries are rechargeable, but getting back to a full charge can take hours. Battery swapping technology would allow a device to replace a depleted battery and return to fully charged in just a few minutes. In the auto industry, this is ideal for EV adoption and implementing fast-charging stations.
In the medical field, this would mean that mobile workstations experience minimal downtime due to charging. A battery swap station would allow healthcare providers to easily change out battery packs and continue working. During periods of power loss and emergency backup, battery swapping could conserve backup power for the devices that need it most.
Challenges to Battery Swapping
There have been significant advancements in battery size and weight over the last decade. However, powerful batteries are still large and can be pretty heavy. Electric car batteries can weigh over 500 pounds. Some medical devices have batteries that weigh up to 50 pounds. The weight of these batteries makes it difficult for even the strongest humans to swap them easily.
In addition to significant weight issues, most larger batteries don’t come in standard sizes. Each manufacturer of equipment develops and designs their battery shape specifically for their product. This makes it nearly impossible for a battery swap company to carry an inventory of the right batteries.
A final challenge of battery swapping is that during the transition period, the device is without power. This is fine for an electric car that is parked. For medical equipment, downtime can be much more problematic and affect patient care. Battery swapping must occur while medical devices are powered on and functioning correctly.
Hot Swapping for Medical Technology
Battery swapping for electric vehicles might have hit a dead end with the numerous challenges it faces and the advancement of fast chargers for Elon Musk’s Teslas and other EVs. However, medical devices powered by batteries have a solution to make swappable batteries a reality for all healthcare facilities.
Hot swapping is a term used to describe any computer component or accessory that can be removed and replaced without affecting the computer’s performance. For hot swapping to work with batteries, a backup battery must be in place. Scott-Clark Medical has developed a unique medical cart technology that allows for the hot-swapping of batteries through an additional battery port.
The ability to easily swap batteries without powering down a device opens up opportunities for many health care providers. For nurses working long shifts, battery swapping allows them to have a mobile workstation that powers through their whole shift instead of just a portion of it. In the operating room, battery swapping eliminates the need for power cables that clutter the floor and affect maneuverability.
Patented Mobile Cart Power Technology
Scott-Clark Medical is a leader in innovation for mobile medical carts. With patented Flexible Mobile Cart Power Technology, our medical carts can power through even the most challenging work environment. You’ll get a fully customizable solution that improves patient care and increases efficiency. Call today for more information on how Scott-Clark Medical can help your facility.