It’s no secret that mercury is a dirty word in environmental circles, and more of the big guns of electronics are starting to take note. Apple's MacBook Pro now features a mercury-free backlight display, and Fuji has released its eco-friendly EnviroMax batteries. This week Sony has strengthened its enviro-credibility by announcing a line of mercury-free alkaline button batteries.
Alkaline button batteries typically use a small quantity of mercury to prevent battery leak caused by hydrogen gas build up. To alleviate this without the use of mercury, Sony has incorporated an innovative gas absorbing material in the batteries’ cathode to prevent build up.
Sony developed a mercury-free silver oxide button-cell in 2004, and taking into consideration that Sony sells in the vicinity of 300 million silver oxide and alkaline button batteries annually, this represents a marked improvement in environmental impact. According to research this translates into a reduction of 470kg worth of mercury production from Sony annually.
Due to start hitting the stores internationally around September, pricing is yet to be determined.