The move follows a review of the current battery technologies used by RSK, with the results showing how a change from lead-acid to lithium-ion chemistry, a much cleaner technology, would not only be safer for the environment, but it would result in a reduced carbon footprint.
As well as the safety and environmental benefits, client advantages are also in abundance. The lithium-ion batteries are only a third of the weight of lead-acid, yet their efficiency is nearly 100% greater in charge and discharge, allowing for the same amp hours in and out. This, with their ability to be discharged 100% without impacting their performance (compared with lead-acid at 50%), delivers longevity gains for real-time monitoring systems on-site. Their lifecycle is also typically 10x greater than lead-acid, delivering much longer life and cost in use over time.
Speaking about the switch to lithium-ion batteries, Siddharth Grover, Associate Director for Environment, Health and Safety said: “RSK is always looking for ways to lower its carbon footprint and while the switch from lead-acid to lithium-ion may only be small, the impact has been tremendous, bringing not only the desired environmental benefit but also numerous client benefits. This has included prolonging the life of our real-time monitoring systems on-site, an act that has been acknowledged by clients on many projects, including the Barking Riverside Extension, London; Midland Metro Alliance, Birmingham; HS2; London City Airport; and Copperas Hill, Liverpool.
“Being able to extend the longevity on-site of our real-time monitoring equipment means that the contractor or client saves substantial amounts on maintenance visits related to battery changes and system inspections. It is estimated that for a long-term monitoring project spanning between 50–100 weeks, there can be cost savings up to 30–40%, in addition to providing an innovative and reliable solution.”
RSK has been working closely with its Swedish partner Sigicom Ltd. to assist in this transition. RSK and Sigicom share an excellent working relationship that is continually growing from strength to strength with numerous collaborations across the UK. Sigicom’s UK division is led by Simon Perry and the global division by Torbjorn Rehnstrom.