Saft Li-ion batteries boost autonomy for Airwave’s roof-top base stations in London

Saft’s lightweight and compact Evolion® battery modules have enabled Airwave to maintain the battery capacity at critical telecom base stations across London without the need to reinforce roof structures.

Paris, November 26, 2014 –  Saft Evolion® Lithium-ion (Li-ion) telecom battery modules have been deployed by Airwave, the leading provider of mission critical voice and data communications in Great Britain, at six roof-top base stations across London as part of a network upgrade. The use of Saft’s ultra-compact, lightweight maintenance-free Evolion batteries has enabled Airwave to maintain the autonomy of its mission critical base stations by reducing the overall weight of the backup battery installed at each site by some 1,200 kg – equivalent to a medium-sized car.

“It is imperative that we take into consideration the autonomy of the Airwave Network when increasing capacity, as this ensures continuity of service in the event of a disruption in the mains supply,” says Martin Benké, Network Operations Director at Airwave. “The use of the batteries also paved the way for a new direct current (DC) cooling system, designed by our Airwave engineers to further ensure that the base stations operate at safe temperatures during mains outages.”

Saft delivered an innovative solution in the form of its Evolion telecom battery modules developed to offer exceptional energy density in terms of both volume and weight. This made it possible to replace the existing site batteries with up to 16 Evolion modules connected in parallel to create a 48 V battery system capable of providing around 62 kWh of backup - but weighing in at just 480 kg.

‘The batteries are compatible with existing telecom equipment, so installation and commissioning was very straightforward. Being light weight was an added benefit as they could be carried by hand to the roof, with no need for heavy lifting equipment.’ says Martin Benké.

In addition to their size, weight, temperature range and efficiency advantages, the Evolion modules provide a long service life and fast and easy installation, while also being totally maintenance-free with smart communications that contribute to an optimised Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).