A series of experiments have been performed to investigate the effects of three electrolytes of different compositions (EO, EA and EM) on the electrochemical characteristics of MmNi3.55Co0.72Al0.3Mn0.43 hydrogen storage alloy electrode. Electrolytes EA and EM were obtained by adding appropriate amounts of Al2(SO4)3 and MnSO4 to the original electrolyte EO (6 M KOH + 1 wt% LiOH), respectively. Electrode activation, maximum capacity, cycle life, self-discharge and high-rate discharge characteristics have been studied. It was found that a maximum capacity of about 260 mA h/g has been obtained for the alloy electrodes in all these electrolytes after 5-7 cycles of charging/discharging. The alloy electrodes have a good durability in electrolytes EA and EM, especially after 175 cycles. Using the capacity retention as an indication of self-discharge resistance, almost identical degree of capacity retention (82% after 4 days and 45% after 16 days) has been observed at 298 K, regardless of the electrolytes used. When tested at higher temperature, however, a higher capacity retention (46% after 3 days) at 333 K has been observed for electrodes in electrolyte EA, and about 32% for electrodes in both electrolytes EO and EM. As to high-rate discharge behavior of the results of high-rate discharge tests indicated that about 50% of discharge efficiencies were obtained in the three electrolytes at 333 K by continuous-model high-rate discharge method, at a discharge rate of 7C, and 22% in 298 K. The alloy electrode in electrolyte EM has the best durability, in which about 50% of discharge efficiency at DC = 9C was obtained by step-model high-rate discharge method at 333 K, which was even higher than that at 298 K.
- High-rate discharge