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General I wish I knew more about lithium batteries...

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by CaptainSunset, Aug 3, 2016.

  1. CaptainSunset

    CaptainSunset Member
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    I just got my 1st real smartphone; a Motorola Droid Turbo, which has a powerful but non-replacable battery.
    My last phone was a cheap Kyocera, which I'd loaned to a friend who kinda tossed it out of their car. It was very broken, but the fractured screen still lit up like a psychodelic stamp. It wasn't til I much later opened it up that I noticed the tiny flatpack lithium battery has swollen up to the size of a jumbo grape.

    Yesterday I saw a BBC article about an Aussie bicyclist who carried his iphone in the same pocket I generally use. His phone basically turned into a piece of smoldering lava after he fell, and it gave him a large, hand-sized 3rd degree burn on the back of his thigh.

    The burn certainly looks serious enough in the photo, you can see it here:
    http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-36955531

    Not to be paranoid, but I started thinking about all today's lithium batteries that eventually will be left in boxes, drawers, storage spaces, etc inside old phones, toy drones, even electric cars like the Tesla. And after the hoverboard fiasco, various agencies have been considering various bans on shipping them anywhere, which makes recycling more difficult.

    Right now, LiPo batteries are used primarily in high-end gadgets, like expensive smartphones & drones.
    But if it's true that the $99 dollar phone is coming, I don't see any way that Quality Control won't take a huge hit- and being hit seems to be what causes these batteries to go blooie.

    It isn't an Android issue per se, but these batteries are inside most all our phones which are lying around our fairly flammable homes, cars, etc. That photo made me take it a bit more seriously, and realize there's a lot I don't know about modern batteries.

    Comments?
     

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  2. AZgl1500

    AZgl1500 Android Expert
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    The batteries are quite robust actually.

    What kills them is heat, and a lot of it.
    Also, if they get punctured and the chemistry gets mixed up together they "can" burst into flame.

    paranoia can be a bothersome thing, but for the most part, it is a "don't worry about it situation".


    I have a Note 4 that I killed the battery on just last month.

    Scenario:

    It was in mapping mode reporting verbably the route to take.
    it was on charge from an Anker 26,800 model battery pack, which pushes a hard and fast recharge to the phone's battery. ( this generates heat )
    And, to help it out a bit more..... some klutz in a stupor laid it on the dash of the truck in full sunlight....

    for some reason??? it just decided to die a quick death. the phone quit working, and has not worked since.... the replacement battery was lost by FedEx bless their souls.... but the eBay vendor took pity on me and mailed out a replacement... Bless his soul, and at no cost to me!

    The battery measures 0.00 volts with my DVM... it is dead to the world....
    but, it did NOT catch fire.... according to all the hype, I should have died in a fiery ball of flames.

    sorry, nothing happened, just the phone died.
     
    #2 AZgl1500, Aug 3, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2016
  3. CaptainSunset

    CaptainSunset Member
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    Thanks for posting!
    I was mostly just considering the future issues, when there are millions of these little powerpacks tucked away in kitchen drawers and kids closets.

    I just bought a couple big box store toys for $5; they are golfball-sized LED flashers that fly just like the toy chopper drones. They contain a tiny inaccessible plastic cased LiPo battery that is to be recharged 'for 5 minutes via USB'. When their power runs out they fall out of the sky.

    When my Kyocera was smashed, the battery showed no damage at first and would even power up the screen. Later, the metal-clad battery swoll up so much it cracked the case open. The delayed reaction is what might be a danger.
     
  4. AZgl1500

    AZgl1500 Android Expert
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    those little tiny LiPo batteries in the tiny flying toys???

    whole 'nuther game.... they are built el cheapo, yes, even cheaper than the chinese build stuff.
    they are much more susceptible to catching fire if subjected to abuse, or excess heat, and they will puncture much easier than the cellphone batteries.

    I just replaced one of those tiny LiPo batteries in my Blue Parrott BT headset.
    it is so tiny, I can scarcely hold it in my hands, and i had to solder the old connector onto the tiniest of short wire leads...
    got it done, but sheesh! what a PITA
     
  5. LV426

    LV426 I say we take off and nuke this place from orbit
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    They can be very dangerous when punctured, as seen here

     
  6. AZgl1500

    AZgl1500 Android Expert
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    yes, they can catch fire, but while installed in a cellphone, the chances of that are very slim.

    so small as to be ignored for all practicable purposes.
     

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