eBike Battery Cells - What does 18650 mean?

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Batteries used in current generation e-bikes are made with lithium-ion cells. The cells look like a giant AA batteries.

There are two commonly used sizes:
  • 18650 (18mm diameter, 65mm length, 0 means it’s a cylinder), and
  • 21700 (21mm diameter x 70mm length, 0 cylinder).
18650 is most common because a standard bottom bracket is about 70mm wide, so the 18650 cells can fit laterally into a case about that wide, though they’re usually arranged longitudinally.

There are three types of common li-ion cell, Nickel, Cobalt, and Magnesium and the different chemistries of each have different characteristics. The main companies that make cells are Samsung, Panasonic, Sanyo, LG, and maybe a couple more.
 
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