How batteries discharge: A simple model Academic Article uri icon


  • A typical battery is a set of nominally identical voltaic cells in series and/or parallel. We consider the discharge of a single voltaic cell. As the cell discharges due to current-carrying chemical reactions, the densities of the chemical components decrease, which leads to an increase in the internal resistance of the voltaic cell and, upon discharge, a decrease in its terminal voltage and current. A simple model yields behavior similar to what is observed, although accurate battery models are more complex. 2008 American Association of Physics Teachers.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Saslow, W. M.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Saslow, WM

publication date

  • March 2008