Friday 17 May 2024

KDDI's Power Backup Solutions

Over the last few years you might have read multiple blog posts on our blogs (see related posts below) about how KDDI is preparing for disasters by having all kinds of backup solutions. In the last six months they have taken this even further by taking about their bendable solar cells and lighter backup batteries.

In some situations the base stations have to be installed at locations where it is not possible to deploy solar cells for power. In these locations, KDDI is working with partners to use next generation "perovskite" solar cells which are thin, light and flexible so it can be wrapped around the poles and generate a reasonable power all day long. 

Here is a video (no subtitles, but none needed):

You can learn more about this here.

Another innovation being tested by KDDI is the use of zinc secondary batteries to strengthen power outage countermeasures during disasters. While backup power supply equipment is effective as a countermeasure against long-term power outages during disasters, the problem is that it cannot be installed or expanded due to the load capacity of the building. 

Quoting from the Google translated article:

Zinc secondary batteries are approximately 50% lighter than the lead-acid batteries used in many base stations, allowing for more space to be installed, while having twice the capacity for the same size, extending base station operating time. This can be extended up to 72 hours. 

At base stations, there is an urgent need to install or expand large-capacity backup power supply equipment as a countermeasure against long-term power outages such as during disasters. Zinc secondary batteries are lightweight, allowing more space for installation, and are the same size as lead-acid batteries, allowing base stations to operate for long periods of time, so they are expected to contribute to maintaining communications during disasters. In addition, since it does not contain harmful lead and there is no risk of heat generation, installation work can be simplified, and it is expected to contribute to the acceleration of the expansion of 5G areas.

In this demonstration, we plan to operate a base station that uses zinc secondary batteries as backup power supply equipment in a real environment for one year, confirming its operation through seasonal changes in temperature and humidity, and conducting power outage tests.

Looking forward to hearing about the results of both these initiatives.

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