Earthx Lithium Batteries

Discussion in 'Electrical & Instrumentation' started by Tomcat, Aug 4, 2014.

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  1. Aug 4, 2014 #1

    Tomcat

    Tomcat

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    So did anyone by chance stop by the Earthx booth at Oshkosh and talk to them about their lithium batteries? I spent a bit if time with them and with the little I know about lithium battery technology this one sounded pretty promising compared to some of the others that have been discussed on the forum. I want to make it clear that I am in know way endorsing the product or the company, just sharing some info that I learned about another lithium battery on the market that I hadn't heard of before.

    1. Lithium iron phosphate construction
    2. Built in circuitry which automatically balances cells
    3. Circuitry provides over voltage and over discharge protection by actually disconnecting the cells
    4. Normal 12V battery chargers can be used, not necessary to have a on purpose lithium balance charger
    5. Widely used in the snowmobile market so apparently cold temp operation is adequate, although they did tell me there is decreased performance in the cold so they recommend a larger battery if more CCA is required
    6. The size battery which is equivalent to the Odyssey PC680 (ETX36D) is only 3.9lbs

    Here is a link to their website:

    http://earthxmotorsports.com/product-category/experimental-aircraft/

    I'd be interested in hearing any comments, concerns, observations as the lithium technology still has my interest peaked.
     
  2. Aug 4, 2014 #2

    race38

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    I talked to Aliant with the same technology. They want more than double what Aerovoltz wants for theirs. I can buy 4 PC680s for the same money.
    I didn't see them, but it's hard to see it all. Got a link for them?


    Sent from my iPhone using Biplane Forum
     
  3. Aug 4, 2014 #3

    Tomcat

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    Link is in my original post. Thanks!
     
  4. Aug 4, 2014 #4

    smizo

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    Just an FYI....... We have a skybolt on the field that hardly ever flies. Long story but its got 5 hours in it since it was finished 5 years ago. Last year he put in a 16 cell aerovoltz battery. He has started it a handful of times with it. Typical, barely turns over the first blade or two then spins just fine. We just pulled it out of the hanger on Saturday and ran it for the first time since march. Nothing was done to the battery since its last run. It started right up. Pretty impressive...... The poor skybolt on the other hand..... Took the guy 18 years to build and now he's too old to get in it. Kinda sad.
     
  5. Aug 4, 2014 #5

    S2e

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    I stopped by their booth too. I know nothing about this (or much else), but, I was impressed. When my 680 won't work anymore, I'll have to study up on the subject.


    Sent from my iPhone using Biplane Forum
     
  6. Aug 4, 2014 #6

    CAKevin

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    I bought the 16 cell Aerovoltz and their matching balanced charger to use with my S-1S with an 0-360. I received the battery but, the balanced charger was back ordered and then discontinued awaiting the new upgraded model.
    I already planned to return the Aerovolts due to the specific charging requirements and lack of charger.
    Happy their is another option.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2014
  7. Aug 5, 2014 #7

    Larry Lyons

    Larry Lyons

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    Gotta be a Guiney Pig in every bunch. I bought one, the ETX36D. Installed it yesterday, spins the 0-235 like gang busters. However that is all I can tell you now. I still lack exhaust and some other things waiting for that part to be done so I can go in and finish the FWF. I debated all week before committing to this make, may not even be around next year.

    L
     
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  8. Aug 5, 2014 #8

    Lotahp1

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    I talked to these guys alot while I was there. I like the fact that they use real A123 cells not the cheapest Chinese cell they can find and I like the fact it has a built in BMS ( battery management system) so no balance charger is ever needed and you can charge it with a standard charging system as long as you can regulate the voltage. I was really looking at the big one...the $750 one! Really crazy price but has tons of power. And weighs 7.5lbs vs the 25-30 my old battery and battery box weighed. Please keep us posted on how the one you got works out. I've decided I'm only interested in this type of battery if it has a BMS built in. The cheaper ones don't yet.


    Kris
    Oklahoma City,OK
    Currently restoring a Ranger powered Starduster Too
     
  9. Aug 6, 2014 #9

    Tomcat

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    Larry please keep this thread updated with your results.
     
  10. Aug 8, 2014 #10

    CAKevin

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    I got a RMA# from Aircraft Spruce to return the Aerovolts 16 cell.
    I ordered the earthX ETX36D and their Optimate lithium charger. ETA Monday.
     
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  11. Aug 8, 2014 #11

    Larry Lyons

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    Well I checked out the protection circuitry this week! :mad: Apparently there is a parasitic draw in my plane (all new electrical system and some new equipment) as last night when I got to the hanger everything was dead! So took battery home and will charge it but won't have time to do that while keeping an eye on things until Sunday night earliest. The battery is supposed to protect itself so we'll see. I will keep you posted just as soon as I l know anything.
     
  12. Aug 12, 2014 #12

    Larry Lyons

    Larry Lyons

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    Battery recharged with my standard/old battery charger over night. Held 13.34V from this morning (7:30am to 6pm this afternoon. Put in plane but did not try turning over engine yet, looking for parasite, however powered up instrument panel. Nothing else to add as of tonight.

    L
     
  13. Aug 14, 2014 #13

    CAKevin

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    I also installed a ETX36D. Easiest 11 lb. I ever lost. :)
    I attached a few of pics for size comparison.

    IMG_2644.jpg

    IMG_2646.jpg

    IMG_2649.jpg

    IMG_2650.jpg

    IMG_2651.jpg

    IMG_2648.jpg

    IMG_2652.jpg

    IMG_2655.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2014
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  14. Aug 15, 2014 #14

    Larry Lyons

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    I don't have mine fitted to the battery box yet. We spent some time last night chatting about my parasitic draw. As two of my flying friends are electrical engineers as soon as they and I have time we should be able to get to the bottom of this. My battery box is for the old lead acid so it is much bigger than I will need but I have part of my panel mounted to it so it will stay for now.

    L
     
  15. Aug 15, 2014 #15

    Lotahp1

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    I've seen alot of mods done to battery boxes. If its a true box with a too and all I'd use wood that was cut to fill voids. Light and cheap.


    Kris
    Oklahoma City,OK
    Currently restoring a Ranger powered Starduster Too
     
  16. Aug 15, 2014 #16

    Larry Lyons

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    Yup, true box with top. There are foam pads like in the pics above that came with the new battery. They are sticky on one side but I don't know if they will be enough. If not I will use foam board, light and plenty of density to do the job nicely. I needed to raise the seat cushion 2" to match the parachute seat pack so I had the upholsterer include a 2" foam board in between the temper foam layers and the bottom plywood. Works like a charm. Love the temper foam, it is 3 different densities with the softest on top.

    L
     
  17. Aug 15, 2014 #17

    CAKevin

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    The foam spacers earthX supplied with the new battery are pretty dense but, I'll check it periodically and make sure nothing is moving around. If it looks like they are compressing, I'll use some balsa wood.
     
  18. Aug 15, 2014 #18

    jerr888

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    Anyone including an external power plug with their install?
     
  19. Aug 15, 2014 #19

    Larry Lyons

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    Yea, its called hand propping! :)
     
  20. Aug 15, 2014 #20

    CAKevin

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    No, but, I may take the charger with me to my next few contests just In case I have any battery issues. Although it can be charged like Larry said with a standard charger.
     

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