Battery back-up is essential for virtually every video surveillance, access and security system, as power interuptions can occur at any time with little to no warning. Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) batteries have been the mainstay back-up solution for security professionals for nearly four decades, but now there’s a new and extremely efficient option available ­that changes everything. Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries, also known as LiFePO4 batteries, provide significant performance and long-term, cost-saving advantages that will eventually render SLA batteries obsolete.

The benefits of LiFePO4 batteries are already being leveraged for numerous business and personal devices ranging from smoke detectors and laptop computers to recreational vehicles and solar energy systems, due to their high-efficiency and improved safety attributes. Now LiFePO4 batteries are being incorporated into mission critical security power and transmission products providing system operators with a unique value proposition that ensures continuous operation of these foundational devices and lowers overall costs.

LiFePO4 batteries offer a tremendous improvement over legacy SLA batteries and back-up solutions. Although the initial purchase price of a LiFePO4 battery is more than a conventional SLA battery, it offers a significantly lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) with a cost per cycle of approximately $0.31 versus $0.92 for SLA batteries. Factors impacting these calculations include that LiFePO4 batteries can cycle up to 5,000 times over their life span versus only up to 500 cycles for SLA batteries. Additionally, LiFePO4 batteries have a 10-year shelf life, which allows resellers the ability to leverage their buying power and expenses, as SLA batteries require charging every six months while not in use. LiFePO4 batteries also allow for rapid charging and discharging, delivering more uptime to keep systems running longer. These attributes alone make it easy to see and justify how LiFePO4 batteries deliver increased operational efficacy for all critical security system applications.

Now security power and transmission solutions have now been optimized to leverage the numerous benefits of LiFePO4 battery charging and back-up with unique features to replace the necessity and weight of four SLA batteries with a single 12VDC LiFePO4 battery for 48VDC backup. Additionally, LiFePO4 batteries are typically 33-50 percent lighter in weight than conventional SLA batteries, reducing both shipping costs and storage space. They also provide a significant environmental benefit since they contain lighter metals and do not contain toxic chemicals that cause decay. As a result, recycling and redistribution of LiFePO4 batteries is both easier and less costly by decreasing the expenses and time associated with the proper disposal of batteries when they reach the end of their life cycle.  

The introduction of LiFePO4 battery back-up for demanding power and transmission solutions represents a significant breakthrough for the professional security industry. It’s an innovation poised to impact virtually all surveillance, access, security and fire systems by greatly improving the reliability, uptime and TCO of new and existing systems.