Motorcycle Batteries .. AGM, GEL, Wet, Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4)

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by _cy_, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    quite correct!

    even though lithium iron phosphate chemistry is much more stable than lithium cobalt. Voltage requirements of existing electronics dictate which chemistry will be compatible. lithium cobalt operates between 4.2v fully charged to 3.0v dead. very little energy remains below 3.25v.

    a lithium cobalt battery made from four cells x 4.2v = 16.8v fully charged to 13v dead or not compatible with a motorcycle's electronics.

    lithium cobalt will be with us for many more years. greatest danger with lithium cobalt occurs during charging. here's a blast from the past..... a detailed article on that topic, I wrote back in 2007 on Candlepower Forums (thread ended up 116 pages) http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb...-using-li-ion-cells-occurs-during-re-charging

    battery packs from name brand electronics with lithium cobalt will usually contain protection circuitry. due to higher energy densities and voltage requirements of existing gear. Lots of RC folks are still flying with lithium cobalt li-po packs. generally they understand the dangers and are using sophisticated chargers with balancing circuits, charging at limits their li-po packs can withstand.
    #61
  2. Rajin Cajun

    Rajin Cajun Been here awhile

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    CY, Any chance of testing the AntiGravity batteries also? I've been on the fence between the Shorai / AntiGravity for my 950 SE and would love to see a REAL comparison between the two.

    Rajin
    #62
  3. RC Pilot

    RC Pilot Shut up and fly!

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    Having installed an EVO 2 in my bike I can attest that it happens just as the video says. When it is only cool (say 30-35) I can usually get by with turning the high beam on for 15-20 seconds. Below 30, a "first try" is sometimes necessary. Let is sit for 30 seconds or so and she starts right up.
    #63
  4. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    What did you mean when you commented that portable devices are using A123 chemistry? I'm pretty sure they don't. The A123 chemistry doesn't have the capacity.
    #64
  5. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    think iphone4 which contains a li-po battery with lithium iron phosphate chemistry. it's not been that long ago since Sony was in the news for their laptops catching on fire. the same for Apple for some of their devices catching on fire. back then 18650 lithium cobalt cells were most produced of all li-ion cells. that title now belongs to A123 type 26650 cells in li-ion power tools.

    increasing capacity and number of cycles are some of the advances for lithium iron phosphate cells.
    they still don't have energy density of lithium cobalt, but some pretty amazing advances have been made. the safety advantage means saving $$$ from lawsuits resulting from li-ion fires/explosions.

    A123 was the original mfg of lithium iron phosphate chemistry, which was discovered at a Texas university research lab. but A123 was the first one to take that chemistry into real life production. Dewalt and Milwaukee were the first to offer li-ion battery powered tools. the cells used was A123 26650 ... since then LOTS of other mfg have gone on to make their own version of A123 cells.

    li-ion batteries is a technology that constantly evolving. with a slew of different chemistry. lithium magnesium and lithium yttrium power LiFeYPO4 are but two more chemistry that's evolved to advance li-ion cells.

    notice I've been writing out lithium iron phosphate (a pita) instead of using abbreviations. reason is there's sooo many variations used by different vendors. it gets down right confusing.

    --------------------------------------
    here's the first test using Shorai 18AH (pb eq) 13.90v resting voltage, 56f degree inside garage. 67 amp draw.... As expected Shorai turned over motor strong, started R80G/S immediately with no issues. hopefully the weather will turn cold so we can see what happens then.

    it bears mentioning Shorai has really done their homework providing an assortment of foam pads. this made installing a Shorai battery securely a breeze.

    enough posting... off for a ride!!!

    [​IMG]
    #65
  6. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    So far as I know, the A123 nano phosphate chemistry is the only type that is okay with 30C discharges.

    Do any of the batteries you are testing have inboard management circuitry?
    #66
  7. RC Pilot

    RC Pilot Shut up and fly!

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    Pleany of Lipo batteries are good for way beyond 30C. I am running 40C lipos in some of my RC cars and batteries of 150C are available. http://www.maxamps.com/Lipo-3250-74-Pack.htm
    #67
  8. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    Yes, that is the advantage of Lipo as well as energy density. A123 is LiFePo. Different chemistry.
    #68
  9. high dangler

    high dangler Been here awhile

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    i like Yuasa AGM batteries .They're not cheap but I learned my lesson on cheap replacement batteries with same part#
    #69
  10. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    li-po stands for lithium polymer, which is referring to how cells are constructed using gel polymer electrolyte without a hard casing inside a pouch. Li-po batteries can be built with lithium cobalt or lithium iron phosphate chemistry.

    here's a clip of li-po (lithium cobalt) catching fire and exploding. lithium iron phosphate batteries can still overheat and puff up. but will not go into thermal runaway and explode.

    All li-ion cells have very low internal resistance and will discharge at very high rates. this is why CCA ratings for li-ion cells means little. what's more important is how those same cells perform when cold. note this is when higher AH batteries have an advantage. necessary pre-heat cycles consumes energy.

    A battery constructed with 4x A123 26650 cells has rating of 2.3AH ...during warm weather this little powerhouse will discharge at very high amp rates. and will deliver amazing performance.

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/z3o_2mwRPdw" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" width="420"></iframe>
    #70
  11. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    I can't find any reference to a commercial LiFePo chemistry Li-Po. Just some research abstracts.
    #71
  12. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    Arrrggghhhh... weather is not cooperating .. low for tonight in Tulsa 39f degree. Shorai LFX21 AH (pb eq) is mounted on R80G/S and is working great. not much of a challenge starting above 40f degrees.

    -----------------

    yup... terms gets thrown around, so can get quite confusing. now lets throw one more term into the pot, that is used interchangeably. prismatic cells.

    lithium-ion batteries can contain arrays of cylindrical cells to make-up a battery pack such as Ballistic Batteries. Li-Po battery packs contain lithium polymer electrolyte inside polymer pouches. which are also called prismatic cells. An example is Shorai which contains 4 x prismatic cells inside a battery case.

    here's a pic of a 3.7v x2 cell lithium polymer battery
    [​IMG]

    here's a pic of a 3.1v A123 prismatic cell, which also happens to be inside a polymer pouch
    which makes this prismatic cell also a li-po battery. note prismatic cells can also be contained in other type containers. like the 20AH test battery with four rectangular plastic cells.

    [​IMG]

    this 20 AH (actual) battery uses four prismatic cells

    [​IMG]

    20 AH (actual) with balance circuitry (shunt) .. removed, circuits scrubbed off an estimated 10% of total AH capacity. carefully tracked individual cells through many charge/discharge cycles. voltages remain very close, even after heavy discharge cycles.

    charging with HP regulated power supply set to terminal at exactly 14.4v or 3.6v when charging single cell.

    [​IMG]
    #72
  13. Antigravity

    Antigravity Been here awhile

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    Hi Rajin, I'm glad your are considering us I own Antigravity. In regards to Shorai and us we feel there is big difference, but last time I spoke of the warranty difference I got flamed for bashing them... but it was facts... so I will try to respect the sensitivity of other and if you have any questions about us just shoot me an email at scott@antigravitybatteries.com and I will be completely honest with no fluff or bologny.

    I'll explain some of my thoughts on batteries in another post... I actually was contacted by Cy to check the thread out...a lot of good info in it...
    #73
  14. Rajin Cajun

    Rajin Cajun Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the reply Scott! I'm in the market for 4 batteries. ( One for my KTM 950 SE, Ducati 998R & 999R, and One for my Aprilia RSVR Factory ) I'm looking for something light but powerful enough to crank over some big twins so I will definitely contact you!

    Sorry to threadjack Cy... :freaky
    #74
  15. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    @ Antigravity ... thanks for dropping by ... was a pleasure speaking with you yesterday.

    Yup LOTS of information laid out so far ... certainly one of the most detailed set of tests done on li-ion motorcycle batteries anywhere on the WWW.

    very much trying to provide lab quality results by tracking variables that specifically effects li-ion cell's performance. especially real life cold weather performance.

    discharge tests using load testers are a good indicator of performance, but have limited value in the real world. what really counts is will this ultra light/powerful battery start my bike up when it's winter outside?

    ----------------------
    #75
  16. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    a balmy 35f degree outside @ 7:15am in Tulsa. 13.31v resting overnight voltage.

    lights and heated grips turned on for about 5 seconds. then pressed starter button with choke off. don't want engine to start too soon. battery turns over engine strong ... draw is 124 amp for 3-4 seconds... repeat for 4 cycles.

    finally the choke is turned on... R80G/S roars to life!
    very impressive performance from Shorai LFX21 AH (pb eq)

    but it's only 35f degree outside and bike has only been sitting outside for about 1/2 hour after sitting overnight in a 48f degree garage. still a valid scenario for folks riding to work.

    [​IMG]

    voltage recovering after above load test

    [​IMG]
    #76
  17. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    Lithium polymer is called that because the electrolyte is a polymer not because the container is a polymer. The form of the container doesn't matter. If the cell casing is wood, is that a lithium wood?
    #77
  18. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    thanks for the clarification... posting from memory and we all know how infallible that can be :D
    hey no one knows it all and glad for anyone to catch and inaccuracies.

    edit: found it... on the Battery University site, which is one of the premier sources of battery information on the WWW.

    "To make the modern Li-polymer battery conductive at room temperature, gelled electrolyte is added. All Li-ion polymer cells today incorporate a micro porous separator with moisture. The correct term is &#8220;Lithium-ion polymer&#8221; (Li-ion polymer or Li-polymer for short). Li-polymer can be built on many systems, such as Li-cobalt, NMC, Li-phosphate and Li-manganese. For this reason, Li-polymer is not considered a unique battery chemistry. Most Li-polymer packs for the consumer market are based on Li-cobalt.

    With gelled electrolyte added, what then is the difference between a normal Li&#8209;ion and Li&#8209;ion polymer? As far as the user is concerned, the lithium polymer is essentially the same as the lithium-ion battery. Both use identical cathode and anode material and contain a similar amount of electrolyte. Although the characteristics and performance of the two systems are alike, the Li&#8209;polymer is unique in that a micro porous electrolyte replaces the traditional porous separator. The gelled electrolyte becomes the catalyst that enhances the electrical conductivity. Li-polymer offers slightly higher specific energy and can be made thinner than conventional Li-ion, but the manufacturing cost increases by 10&#8211;30 percent. Despite the cost disadvantage, the market share of Li-polymer is growing.

    Li-polymer cells also come in a flexible foil-type case (polymer laminate or pouch cell) that resembles a food package"

    http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/the_li_polymer_battery_substance_or_hype

    on to the next tests

    ----------------------------
    10:15am Tulsa.. it's now 54f degree outside. Shorai LFX21 AH (pb eq) has recovered to 13.29v after sitting since earlier tests. going from 13.31v to 13.29 indicates very little capacity was used on the first tests.

    flip the lights and heated grips on for 10 seconds... press the starter ... draws 105amps... motor spin over strong. choke is off, not ready for motor to start yet.... repeat for 4 more cycles.... 125amp draw.

    starter is yet engaged again for another 4 sets ... now starter is drawing 145amps ... finally I turn the choke on... motor is spinning plenty strong. motor tries runs for a few seconds, but will not start. starter motor is energized for yet another 4-5 cycles. Battery is finally starting to slow down after these brutal series of starts.

    time out for 2-3 minutes while battery recovers to 13.14v..... OOPSS... forgot to turn the fuel on.
    press the button, starter cranks strong..... R80G/S roars to life.

    what an impressive performance from this little battery!!!
    before we uncork the champagne ... we've not see how Shorai performs when it's cold yet.

    resting voltage 13.29v @ 54f degree, before continuing tests from earlier this morning.
    [​IMG]

    13.08v and raising after 8+ cycles at 54f degrees, 145+amp draws

    [​IMG]

    Shorai recovers to 13.14v after all the pounding... then cranks over motor strong again

    [​IMG]
    #78
  19. Danjal

    Danjal Insert wit here.

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    The motobatt is an agm for sure. I bought one years ago for my gs after i was tired of replacing the mix type lead acid batteries every year. Worked like a champ. Buddy is still using it in that bike. Anyway, back to the show.
    #79
  20. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    bike was pushed back into garage for last several hours.... it's now 1:19pm
    Shorai 18AH (pb eq) has recovered to 13.17v @ 56f degree... 98amp draw
    engine fired right up...

    if chart in post #44 is correct... this means about 60% of total capacity still remains. even after all the start cycles this battery was subjected to this morning.

    from post #44 in this thread...

    1. 14.4v fully charged
    2. 14.4v to 13.4v. initial drop represents about 10% of capacity.
    2. drop from 13.4v to 12.4v represents 80% of total capacity.
    3. below 12.4 represents 10% of remaining capacity.
    Don't drop below 12.86v (80% DOD) .. battery life (number of cycles) drops dramatically,

    -----
    going for a ride to see how battery recovers ...

    [​IMG]

    X 2 for four cell data

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #80