Lithium batteries are incredibly popular these days. You can find them in laptops, PDAs, cell phones and iPods. They're so common because, pound for pound, they're some of the most energetic rechargeable batteries available.
Lithium batteries have also been in the news lately. That’s because these batteries have the ability to burst into flames occasionally. It's not very common -- just two or three battery packs per million have a problem -- but when it happens, it's extreme. In some situations, the failure rate can rise, and when that happens you end up with a worldwide battery recall that can cost manufacturers millions of dollars.