Glossary
Glossary page banner

Simple Definitions

The most important electronics terms, demystified in one place.

New

Video Tutorials:

New Video Tutorials:

Battery

Our Take

A chemical voltage source. Depending on the chemical make-up and size, it can have a variety of voltages, power capacities (how much current they can source at any give moment), and energy capacities (how much charge they can provide total).

Book Definition

A battery is a device that converts chemical energy into electrical energy.

Grob’s Basic Electronics, 11th Edition by Mitchel E. Schultz

Wikipedia

A battery is a device consisting of one or more electrochemical cells with external connections provided to power electrical devices such as flashlights, mobile phones, and electric cars.[1] When a battery is supplying electric power, its positive terminal is the cathode and its negative terminal is the anode.[2] The terminal marked negative is the source of electrons that will flow through an external electric circuit to the positive terminal. When a battery is connected to an external electric load, a redox reaction converts high-energy reactants to lower-energy products, and the free-energy difference is delivered to the external circuit as electrical energy.[3] Historically the term "battery" specifically referred to a device composed of multiple cells, however the usage has evolved to include devices composed of a single cell.[4]

Primary (single-use or "disposable") batteries are used once and discarded; the electrode materials are irreversibly changed during discharge. Common examples are the alkaline battery used for flashlights and a multitude of portable electronic devices. Secondary (rechargeable) batteries can be discharged and recharged multiple times using an applied electric current; the original composition of the electrodes can be restored by reverse current. Examples include the lead-acid batteries used in vehicles and lithium-ion batteries used for portable electronics such as laptops and mobile phones.

Make Bread with our CircuitBread Toaster!

Get the latest tools and tutorials, fresh from the toaster.

What are you looking for?