Lithium Battery Cells: 3 Types You Need To Know

Lithium Battery Cells: 3 Types You Need To Know

By Sixpack | December 30th 2022

There are three types of Li-ion battery cells, and the common specifications for each type. Learn how to identify each cells and get their characteristics.

Kay Chen

Project Manager

3 min read

lithium-ion battery cell is a rechargeable battery that uses lithium ions as the primary charge carrier. These batteries are widely used in portable electronic devices, electric vehicles and grid storage systems.


There are several different types of Li-ion battery cells on the market, which may vary in size, capacity and performance characteristics. Some common types include: cylindrical cells, Prismatic cells, and pouch cells.




1. Cylindrical Lithium Battery Cells


Cylindrical cells have small size, good cell consistency, higher energy density of single cells, more flexible group formation, mature production process and low cost.

The name of the cylindrical lithium battery consists of 3 letters and 5 digits.




(1) 3 Letters


The first letter: ” I ” indicates lithium ion with built-in, ” L ” indicates lithium metal or lithium alloy electrode.

The second letter: ” C ” denotes drill,  ” N ” denotes nickel, ” M ” denotes manganese, and ” V ” denotes vanadium. (positive electrode material)

The third letter: ” R ” means rounded.



(2) 5 Numbers


The first 2 numbers indicate the diameter, the last 3 numbers indicate the height. Unit: mm

For example: ICR18650 is the diameter of 18mm, the height of 65mm, 0 indicates the round general 18650 cylindrical battery.


(3) Other


” 3.7V ” is the nominal voltage of 3.7V.

” 3C ” is the discharge rate when the battery is discharged,  commonly known as the discharge size or speed per unit of time. Unit: mAh

For example: If the battery capacity used is discharged for 1h, it is called 1C discharge; if it is discharged for 5h, it is called 0.2C discharge.


(Some commonly used models)


2. Lithium Prismatic Cells


This type of battery has smaller cell gap and tighter internal material, the battery is not easy to expand under the limit of high hardness, and the safety is higher.

At the same time, the shell is made of aluminum-magnesium alloy with lower density, lighter weight and higher strength to further strengthen the internal protection, and the corresponding production process is not complicated. As it can be customized according to demand, there are more models on the market.


(Some commonly used models)


3. lithium Pouch Cells


lithium pouch cells battery is the best among the three routes, with flexible size, high energy density and light weight.

However, the mechanical strength is not high, the production process is also more complicated, the production cost is high, and the cost performance is average.



Model naming of pouch cells:


6 numbers indicate the thickness, width and height of the battery, respectively, in millimeters. When any one of the three dimensions is greater than or equal to 100mm, a slash should be added between the dimensions; If there is less than 1mm in the three dimensions, the letter t will be added in front of the dimension number, meaning 1/10mm.


–  ICP103450 means a square secondary lithium battery, the cathode material is drill, thickness:10mm, width: 34mm, height:50mm.


–  ICPO8/34/150 means a square secondary lithium battery with a drill as the cathode material, whose thickness:8 mm, width:34 mm and height:150 mm.


–  ICPt73448 means a square secondary lithium battery, the cathode material is drill, its thickness:0.7mm, the width:34mm and the height:48mm.


(Some commonly used models)




In general, different batteries have their own advantages and disadvantages. Each battery has its own area of excellence that suits it.  You can determine which battery you want to use according to your needs. Or contact SIXPACK for more useful suggestions.


At the same time, when choosing and identifying lithium battery products. Not only do you need to know the voltage and power of the power-using equipment. Working hours and other in-depth understanding, but also to understand the different characteristics and functions of different types and models of lithium batteries.



Frequently Asked Questions:


1. What are the advantages of cylindrical batteries compared to prismatic batteries?

Cylindrical batteries are suitable for mass production and lower cost, with a variety of combinations, suitable for a wide range of electrical products. © 2022 All Rights Reserved