A quick look at the history of mercury batteries
Despite the fact that mercury batteries were invented over a century ago, they were not widely used until the 1940s. During and after WWII, mercury batteries were popular in mobile devices. They were made in small and large sizes, and were commonly found in watches, radios, and remote controls.
They became popular due to their extremely stable voltage - approximately 1.3 Volts. Their capacity was also significantly higher than that of comparable-sized batteries. This has made them especially desirable for photographers over the years, as they consistently produce stable power during exposure, resulting in crisp, beautiful images.
Why were mercury batteries worldwide banned?
Measures for a more sustainable future must be taken to reduce harmful effects on the environment. Mercury is extremely hazardous to the environment in all applications, especially when improperly disposed of. As a result, Panasonic has accepted responsibility and has discontinued the use of mercury in batteries entirely.
What are the best alternatives for mercury batteries?
Is there a reliable replacement for the stable power and high capacity of mercury batteries that does not contain mercury?
If you require stability, Panasonic silver oxide batteries are the way to go. These coin-sized batteries discharge at a very constant rate, making them ideal for small high-drain devices. Because many - now vintage - cameras were designed to work only with a stable (mercury) battery, the Panasonic silver oxide coin is an ideal replacement for great photos.
Panasonic EVOLTA NEO is an excellent and even better alternative for high-drain devices if you need a larger, AA-size alkaline battery with no mercury added. Their large capacity makes them ideal when you need to enjoy both high- and low-drain for an extended period of time.