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Batteries & Chargers Discuss Li-P, Li-Ion, NiMh, Nicad battery technology and the chargers that juice 'em up!

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Old 02-13-2012, 11:18 PM   #1
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Default Deep Cycle Lead Acid Battery Life Span

As previously indicated in other www.wattflyer.com threads, I've had problems with the lifespan of those 120 Ampere Hour deep cycle batteries, when used to recharge my giant scale models equipped with a 12S2P A123 battery pack.
(http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=63918)
(http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48469)

The A123 charger uses a Cellpro Powerlab 8 that is setup to charge the 12S2P pack as a 6S4P pack. The charge rate is 20 Amperes, that results in pulling about 40 Amps out of the deep cycle battery.

Given the deep cycle battery rating of 120 Ampere Hours, and pulling 40 amps out of it, the deep cycle battery should last for three hours. That would be about four flights, and would take about 50% out of the deep cycle battery.

In the real world, that was far far from what was actually obtained.

Ran across an old (very old) formula for Lead Acid battery applications called "Peukerts Law", that dates back over 100 years. This formula indicates that if a Lead Acid battery is discharged in less than the industry standard 20 hour test, the battery ampere hour rating is reduced. Peukerts Law show just how much it is reduced.

Taking the example of the 120 Ampere Hour battery, and discharging it at 40 amperes, its actual ampere hour rating drops by a whopping 50%. If I read that right, rather than discharging to what I thought was 1/2 charge, the battery was actually being totally discharged. No wonder those lead acid batteries were not holding up on my giant scale models.

Take a look at these threads. The first one has a calculator that can be used to check your actual application. Also, if you google "Peukerts Law" you will find a LOT of information on this subject.

http://www.gizmology.net/batteries.htm
http://www.caravanandmotorhomebooks....ukerts_law.htm

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Old 02-14-2012, 12:03 AM   #2
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That's very interesting. I did know that pulling higher currents diminished the Ah capacity available (in any battery) but i didn't know the effect was quite so marked on lead acids. This will tend to drive battery selection to massive size batteries that are very unwieldy to transport and handle, and also pretty expensive.

Maybe carrying a few extra flight batteries to reduce field charging requirements is suddenly a more attractive option?

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Old 02-14-2012, 01:12 AM   #3
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Again I find the cheapo generator is the answer. Mine was under $90 on sale and is 800w - more than enough for a charger or two.

Denny - interesting for sure. They are expensive, heavy and don't last. Enough said.

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Old 02-14-2012, 01:58 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Again I find the cheapo generator is the answer. Mine was under $90 on sale and is 800w - more than enough for a charger or two.

Denny - interesting for sure. They are expensive, heavy and don't last. Enough said.

Mike
Hi Mike
I've looked at those cheapo generators at Harbor Freight, they looked to be two cycle engines?

And, would one of those 800 watt generators be capable of running a Cellpro Powerlab 8 at 40 Amps out of a 120/12 VDC power converter?

Just wondering. Anything over 40 Amps out my Brigg/Alternator setup, and the 3.5 Hp gasoline engine stalls out. Either those alternators have terrible efficiency, or that old Briggs has no where near 3.5 Hp any more.

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Old 02-14-2012, 02:23 AM   #5
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Yep they are two stroke and a bit noisy and certainly pollutes.

They are 800w. So at 40 amps it could do 20v charge on your CellPro.

I have used it at a fly-in event with 6-7 chargers attached. Most were 50-100w types. It had no issues and a full tank was about 5-6 hours so it likely was only 50% load.

It does surge a bit - no question it is cheap but the AC to DC converters we used to power the chargers don't seem to care much about that "dirty" power.

It is fine for camping too.

I am super lucky to have AC power at my home field. Spoils you.

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Old 02-14-2012, 05:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Yep they are two stroke and a bit noisy and certainly pollutes.

They are 800w. So at 40 amps it could do 20v charge on your CellPro.

I have used it at a fly-in event with 6-7 chargers attached. Most were 50-100w types. It had no issues and a full tank was about 5-6 hours so it likely was only 50% load.

It does surge a bit - no question it is cheap but the AC to DC converters we used to power the chargers don't seem to care much about that "dirty" power.

It is fine for camping too.

I am super lucky to have AC power at my home field. Spoils you.

Mike
Thanks for the response.

As for those chargers and "Dirty" power, some of those AC/DC converters are rated for anything between 120 to 240 VAC input.

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Old 02-14-2012, 01:10 PM   #7
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I found out a while back that deep discharge Marine batteries are intended for very low amp draw. They really do not like high amps. As much as I dislike generators, they are the way to go unless you have AC as we do at our field.
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Old 02-14-2012, 02:57 PM   #8
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Wow. That's good info, DennyV. And I was just thinking of looking into a deep cycle batt. Guess I have to look at the generators...
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Old 02-14-2012, 07:15 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by xmech2k View Post
Wow. That's good info, DennyV. And I was just thinking of looking into a deep cycle batt. Guess I have to look at the generators...
Or, buy a big truck, and put in two or three of those 120 Amp Hour batteries in parallel! (Found even that is not good enough for the 2-3KW models and A123 batteries with their high powered chargers)

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Old 02-14-2012, 07:18 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Walt Thyng View Post
I found out a while back that deep discharge Marine batteries are intended for very low amp draw. They really do not like high amps. As much as I dislike generators, they are the way to go unless you have AC as we do at our field.
Walt
Hi Walt
Do you have any records or data on that "very low amp draw"? Might be useful for the other wattflyer readers.

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Old 02-14-2012, 07:57 PM   #11
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I purchased a deep cycle battery, but before I did I was looking into building my own generator.

A used 5.5 horse 4cycle lawn mower motor spinning a belt to run a car Alternator. This gives ~14 volts at significant amps. hooking that up to a standard car battery should result in fairly clean, 14 volts DC without the inefficancies of AC 120 -> DC 12 volt conversion.
Like this:
http://theepicenter.com/tow082099.html

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Old 02-14-2012, 08:25 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by constantCrash View Post
I purchased a deep cycle battery, but before I did I was looking into building my own generator.

A used 5.5 horse 4cycle lawn mower motor spinning a belt to run a car Alternator. This gives ~14 volts at significant amps. hooking that up to a standard car battery should result in fairly clean, 14 volts DC without the inefficancies of AC 120 -> DC 12 volt conversion.
Like this:
http://theepicenter.com/tow082099.html
Yup
Posting #1 of this thread shows my version of the alternator setup: It needs a little bigger engine though, its output is limited at 40 Amps with the 3.5 HP Briggs engine.
http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=63918

FYI, with the engine/alternator setup, you don't need the heavy standard car battery with the alternator. These alternators have three phase windings, and with a three phase AC rectifier that's built in to them, their output voltage is fairly clean. All they need is a cheap lead acid battery like those used in riding lawnmowers.

Also, checked with a club member that's the head of one of the local national brand auto service centers. He indicated it is NOT a good idea to run an alternator without a battery connected. On a significant fraction of the alternators out there, some can have their electronics wiped out by running without a battery. Have to agree, some of the alternators found at the local Farm and Fleet store had warning labels on the alternator shipping cartons indicating to absolutely do NOT run the alternator without a battery connected.

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Old 02-16-2012, 10:13 PM   #13
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As posted in #1 "Peukerts Law", law will enable accurate real world ratings but for those who like simple a true deep cycle will have a reserve minutes rating. Reserve minutes is the length of time a deep cycle can supply 25A load to 100% of discharge.

The 125 Ah ones I use have a reserve minutes rating of 310 min,. or 3-1/2 hrs.

3.5 X 25 =87.5 Ah and that is to fully discharged (10.5V).

That is why I run two of these in parallel and try to limit discharge to around 60 Ah total and that is why I am coming up on 5 years of sevice from them.

Charles
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Old 02-17-2012, 01:24 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by everydayflyer View Post
As posted in #1 "Peukerts Law", law will enable accurate real world ratings but for those who like simple a true deep cycle will have a reserve minutes rating. Reserve minutes is the length of time a deep cycle can supply 25A load to 100% of discharge.

The 125 Ah ones I use have a reserve minutes rating of 310 min,. or 3-1/2 hrs.

3.5 X 25 =87.5 Ah and that is to fully discharged (10.5V).

That is why I run two of these in parallel and try to limit discharge to around 60 Ah total and that is why I am coming up on 5 years of sevice from them.

Charles
Hi Charles
When putting together this thread, I was trying to find out where that reference to Peukerts Law first showed up. Methinks it was one of your threads.

Can you verify???

I'm pulling 40 Amps out of them and did have a pair of 120 Ampere Hour batteries in parallel for the past year.

Thanks

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Old 02-21-2012, 09:30 PM   #15
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One of the very best Pb sites I am aware of

http://www.windsun.com/Batteries/Battery_FAQ.htm

Direct link to your question Peukert's_law from that site.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peukert's_law

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Old 11-21-2012, 11:26 AM   #16
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Seems a paradox that modellers have switched to electric powered models to avoid "oily" power.
Even the faintest whiff of petrol inside a car is detectable by women when carrying a petrol generator in the family car.
Life is never simple!

Looking for a local Club with access to A.C. Mains power supply!
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:44 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by aerotony View Post
Seems a paradox that modellers have switched to electric powered models to avoid "oily" power.
Even the faintest whiff of petrol inside a car is detectable by women when carrying a petrol generator in the family car.
Life is never simple!

Looking for a local Club with access to A.C. Mains power supply!
LOL
Methinks those same women that don't like the petro smell are the same ones that wear a liter of perfume!

(My wife is completely allergic to any perfume smell)

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Old 11-27-2012, 03:26 PM   #18
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Default Peukerts Law

Hi kyleservicetech,

Thanks for the link, I learned a lot of things. Is this really applicable in real world?? Is there any error that can obtain??

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Old 11-27-2012, 05:53 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by veysel View Post
Hi kyleservicetech,

Thanks for the link, I learned a lot of things. Is this really applicable in real world?? Is there any error that can obtain??
Yeah, methinks that Peukerts law still applies to the lead acid batteries mfg today. All of these deep cycle lead acid batteries are rated for a 20 hour discharge cycle.

And it's been my experience that discharging them at 50 Amps, or even 25 Amps for a 120 Ampere hour battery is really hard on them. They don't last under those conditions.

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Old 11-27-2012, 08:02 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by kyleservicetech View Post
Yeah, methinks that Peukerts law still applies to the lead acid batteries mfg today. All of these deep cycle lead acid batteries are rated for a 20 hour discharge cycle.

And it's been my experience that discharging them at 50 Amps, or even 25 Amps for a 120 Ampere hour battery is really hard on them. They don't last under those conditions.
Hi Denny If you have a bunch of Lead Acid batteries, Get a Desulfator, they work great, and will help to make a lead acid battery last up to 10 years, most lead acid batteries only last up to about 3 years before they get plugged up, And its Made in the USA

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Yuasa-Dougla...item4d04f9c862


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Old 11-27-2012, 08:18 PM   #21
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Electric snake oil?
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Old 11-27-2012, 09:01 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Electric snake oil?
Yes and no.

From reading up it seems that sulfation can be a genuine issue on lead acid batteries but only on batteries that dont get fully charged on a regular basis.
On a battery that gets charged fully then de-sulfators aren't going to do any good at all because those batteries don't suffer from sulfation in the first place. They only offer any theoretical benefit on batteries that tend to operate mainly part charged and not often get fully 'topped-up'. In fact there is a chance that the pulsing that the de-sulphator produces could damage a healthy battery:
http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/a...to_prevent_it/
Several companies offer anti-sulfation devices that apply pulses to the battery terminals to prevent and reverse sulfation. Such technologies tend to lower sulfation on a healthy battery but they cannot effectively reverse the condition once present. Manufacturers offering these devices take the “one size fits all” approach and the method is unscientific. A random service of pulsing or blindly applying an overcharge can harm the battery in promoting grid corrosion. Technologies are being developed that measure the level of sulfation and apply a calculated overcharge to dissolve the crystals. Chargers featuring this technique only apply de-sulfation if sulfation is present and only for the time needed.
So on a deep cycle field battery that gets fully and regularly charged between flying sessions, according to the info I've found, sulfation should not be present. If this is the case then de-sulphators wont do any good and could actually cause damage to such batteries.

Of course there are loads of sites/youtube videos saying these de-sulphators work near miracles but they are invariable trying to sell the things
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:25 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Electric snake oil?
No Snake oil Here I have brought back batteries from the dead with these, Sulfation is a big issue with lead acid batteries, these devices blast the sulfation off with pulses of electricity, the US Military uses them too, They work and work well.

http://www.chargingchargers.com/tuto...sulfation.html
PulseTech Desulfation Technology

Lab and field tests by individuals, companies and government agencies around the world have proven that Pulse Technology works. It is literally the most effective method available for ensuring lead-acid battery performance, increasing battery efficiency and reducing battery-related costs. In 1995, PulseTech™ applied their technology to a full line of innovative and unique products designed to make batteries stronger so they will work harder and last longer than ever before. Today, they offer over 60 products designed to help you reduce battery-related problems and costs. While we don’t carry all 60 products in stock, we have access to them.
To get an idea of exactly how important pulse technology is to the performance of all your vehicles, consider this: The main cause of vehicle failure is battery failure due to sulfation buildup on the battery plates. And Pulse Technology prevents sulfation buildup. In most cases, your battery is still good. You just can't reach the energy inside. That means you have to buy another battery even though the one you have may still be usable. PulseTech products help prevent this problem.

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Old 11-27-2012, 11:27 PM   #24
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http://www.impactbattery.com/battery-desulfators/

Battery Desulfators

The battery desulfation market has exploded over the last few years as new companies and technologies come to market. The original battery desulfator technology was developed and patented by Canadus Technologies and sold to PulseTech in the late 1990's and was quickly adopted by the US Military to condition, rejuvenate and restore new and old batteries alike. This frequency based pulse method is literally the most effective method available for ensuring lead-acid battery performance, increasing battery efficiency and reducing battery-related costs.

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Old 11-27-2012, 11:29 PM   #25
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Give them a try, You will be Glad you Did

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