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Old 06-11-2013, 13:12   #1
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Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

I have this thing about fires. I like to know that when I am inconvenienced by a fire that I haven't started, I can put it out and then go back to whatever I was doing. And somehow I've accumulated enough extinguishers so that's usually a simple task.

But with lithium batteries, apparently IF you have a battery fire you can't put it out with anything conventional. And we all know, some lithium chemistries supposedly never will catch fire, but of course the folks who make them still "most strongly" recommend a BMS for reasons including fire prevention. And even brand name makers have had manufacturing defects, causing fires. And folks who hire real engineers, like Boeing, still have problems with battery fires. So...

The thought struck me that lithium-something might be in my future. But then, do I just close my eyes and ignore the fire risk? Or install the battery over a moonpool, so it can be dropped and dumped if it catches fire?

Or do I really need to buy a $650+ Class D "Copper" extinguisher, since there's nothing less (not even conventional Class D "salt") that is effective against a lithium fire? Or what, build your battery box out of fire bricks?

Has everyone who has installed lithium batteries simply ignored this?
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Old 06-11-2013, 15:28   #2
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

There are lots of youtube videos of people shooting bullets through a LiFePo4 and similar scenarios.

If you don't want a fire on a boat, you'll have to quit sailing wherever there might be overhead cables, or lightning. You will also have to quit cooking, using kerosene lanterns, smoking anything and get rid of all electrical stuff.
Like that's going to happen...
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Old 06-11-2013, 16:28   #3
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Slow day for you?
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Old 06-11-2013, 16:43   #4
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Mechanico, you totally miss the point. Fires are fires, they sometimes happen and if you are prepared to deal with them, you deal with them and go back to business as usual. As opposed to the majority of the public who run around saying "Fire, fire, oh my, a fire!" while their houses burn down. Or boats, or cars, whatever.

But somewhere on a back burner (pun encouraged) a stray thought popped into my head today, perhaps because of a rather large inconvenience last weekend (The good news is, it didn't catch fire. The bad news is, it didn't catch fire. Use your imagination to fill in the rest.) I realized gee, wtf do you do if a lithium battery does something that all batteries are known to do, and lithium batteries are known to do better than all the rest?

There's just no way to put the damned thing out, without a D-copper extinguisher, or a breaching charge to punch out the hull and let the battery safely drop free. And you know, since detonex-r-us went out of business, it has gotten real damn hard to get primer cord on the civilian market. Grainger and McMaster don't carry it at all. And the USCG and DHS types all tend to get real upset at the sight of it, no matter how nicely it has been installed.

So it comes back to, gee, a lithium battery. There's no safe way to have one of those on a boat, without the $650 extinguisher, is there? Of course if you're spending four or five grand on a new battery system, a couple of extinguishers to go with it hardly changes the budget in the long run, does it?
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Old 06-11-2013, 17:05   #5
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

We use LiFePo4 batteries NOT LiCo or other chemistries.
'Real' engineers like Boeings should have read our threads and not used LiCo which gave them problems.
At best you could take Senormechanico's advice and do some simple research to at least learn the different characteristics of the two.
Could you please post a link or reference to confirm your statement that a LiFePo4 battery, not the cable or surrounding insulation:-
A: can burn [without being deliberately tortured]
b: can't be extinguished by normal/common methods used on electrics/insulation
c: A reference, other than your own as yet unsubstantiated opinion, that there's no safe way to have a LiFePo4 battery on board w/out said special extinguisher.
Thanks in advance,
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Old 06-11-2013, 17:22   #6
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Mac, there seems to be a reading comprehension problem around here today, because folks keep seeing things that I very clearly haven't said. Y'all need to put up a fresh pot of coffee and try again.

"Could you please post a link or reference to confirm your statement that a LiFePo4 battery... can burn"

See, I never made that statement. I never made any statement specific to any type of lithium battery, I'm just referring to the entire "lithium" family. You may think that Boeing and everyone else using more flammable battery types are dumb or crazy, but that also includes every cell phone and laptop maker on the planet, they're all using other chemistries, not LiFePO4, and they've all had fire problems. And they all continue to use the other chemistries.

Which one might be in my future? I don't know. But when I see companies in the LiFePO4 business fighting each other over patents and names, or selling batteries as drop-in replacements, but then contradicting themselves by saying the (assembled and sealed!) batteries still need BMSes....Balqon reminds me of the old Rocky and Bullwinkle show. "Hey Rockie, wanna see me pull a rabbit out of my hat?" It was always entertaining to see what Bullwinkle pulled out of his hat, but it was never hasenpfeffer.
I've been on a boat that got t-boned, and seen it happen to others. Suppose you got t-boned aft, and someone's bow impacted your invulnerable LiFePO4 battery. Yathink that would count as the type of penetrating damage that could even set that beauty on fire? Damfino. Don't want to know. Certainly couldn't trust the word of any battery maker that can't get the rest of their act together.

But as I said--I'm talking about lithium batteries as a family. NOT LiFePo4, regardless of how "un"flammable anyone says they might be.

Hey, if you're not going to drink that coffee, mind if I have it?
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Old 06-11-2013, 17:57   #7
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Hellosailor,
You tarred every Lithium tech with the same brush thereby creating inaccuracies which cannot be addressed in such a general form, so I isolated LiFePo4 because that is what we use in this application.
I had no problem reading what you wrote and my comprehension skills are adequate.
Yes, I do think Boeing engineers were either stupid or arrogant to use a tech even model airplane users are migrating away from because it's too volatile and therefore dangerous.
At last count [IIRC] there are more than 1000 vids on utube burning, exploding, or destroying LiCo cells or batts, these should not be conflated with the LiFePo4 tech just because the word 'Lithium' is used on both packs.
Now, bearing in mind that most 'Lithium' types are inherently unsuitable for house or starter batt. use, can you please provide a link or reference which substantiate your sweeping views of lithium battery safety on boats?
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Old 06-11-2013, 18:07   #8
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LIFE batteries are far safer than either LI-po or Li-ion, but they don't have nearly the power density of LI-po either
Toyota has stayed away from Li-po and stayed with Ni-Mh for years because of the fire potential, but I think the newer ones are lithium, whether LIFE or not I don't know.
I don't want to start a fight, but I think he is very smart to worry about a fire, what else can make you abandon a boat as fast as a fire can? You need to cell balance any Lithium battery, so why would you not have a BMS?
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Old 06-11-2013, 19:40   #9
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Mechanico, you totally miss the point. Fires are fires, they sometimes happen and if you are prepared to deal with them, you deal with them and go back to business as usual. As opposed to the majority of the public who run around saying "Fire, fire, oh my, a fire!" while their houses burn down. Or boats, or cars, whatever.

But somewhere on a back burner (pun encouraged) a stray thought popped into my head today, perhaps because of a rather large inconvenience last weekend (The good news is, it didn't catch fire. The bad news is, it didn't catch fire. Use your imagination to fill in the rest.) I realized gee, wtf do you do if a lithium battery does something that all batteries are known to do, and lithium batteries are known to do better than all the rest?

There's just no way to put the damned thing out, without a D-copper extinguisher, or a breaching charge to punch out the hull and let the battery safely drop free. And you know, since detonex-r-us went out of business, it has gotten real damn hard to get primer cord on the civilian market. Grainger and McMaster don't carry it at all. And the USCG and DHS types all tend to get real upset at the sight of it, no matter how nicely it has been installed.

So it comes back to, gee, a lithium battery. There's no safe way to have one of those on a boat, without the $650 extinguisher, is there? Of course if you're spending four or five grand on a new battery system, a couple of extinguishers to go with it hardly changes the budget in the long run, does it?
Tell you what, I'll let you know if my boat (200 aH LiFePo4 with BMS) or house ( Grid Tie solar with auto transfer switch- 700 aH LiFePo4 with BMS ) burns down.

So far, so good.

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Old 06-11-2013, 20:50   #10
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

I've never had a car battery explode on me while jump starting a car. Or boat. But after hearing the scurrilous government statistics that report some ten thousand or so do just that every year in the US alone, I've made Real Damn Sure to pay them a bit more respect and minimize the risk, even though I don't use safety goggles.

Car fire, you can always bail and walk home. Boat fire...maybe you know the old joke: Hey Mom, how much longer till we get to Europe? Shut up and keep swimming.

Mac, there's definitely a reading comprehension problem going around today, because you are still reading things I never wrote. I didn't tar all the techs, just the ones who keep making contradictory statements. The vast majority are very up front about the fact that any of the batteries can catch fire and explode.

You're saying the Boeing engineers are dumb--that's tarring them for sure. I never said they were dumb, I just said that even those engineers, who one might assume are highly qualified, have been hit by fire problems. To me that says there are complex issues--not necessarily that the techs are dumb.

And one of those complex issues, for the general public, should be "when and if my lithium-whatever battery catches fire, how the hell do you put it out?" Throw water on it, and you'll just encourage it. You're still ignoring the question I put up front.

IF you have a lithium battery, regardless of the type or the likelihood, and it catches fire, htf do you put that out?

I've seen commercial Laundromats catch on fire (electrical in the drier). I've seen field fires start, and can tell you that burning poison ivy calls for hazmat procedures and immediate medical attention. Also seen spontaneous combustion, no gasoline soaked rags needed. I don't mind being around flammable or explosive things, I'd just like to know htf you stop a lithium battery from ruining your day.

In your case, you're apparently certain that LiFePO4 can never catch fire. Good for you and it. I'm not at all sure that's the chemistry I'll choose, when the choice is made. Or even that it will still be on the market. In case you haven't noticed, even that chemistry has been changed in the past few years, and the patent wars are ongoing.
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Old 06-11-2013, 21:31   #11
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wraith_Mac View Post
Yes, I do think Boeing engineers were either stupid or arrogant to use a tech even model airplane users are migrating away from because it's too volatile and therefore dangerous.
First of all stupid or arrogant is a bit of a stretch. I am sure the Boeing engineers reviewed all of the current technology at the time of design. Lets not forget that aircraft batteries are exposed to some pretty inhospitable conditions to say the least. Constant pressure & temperature cycles, low atmospheric pressure and -60F to start. Its a different game than what some guys on a forum are doing to their boats. No disrespect meant.

Second, planning to put a fire out is just plain smart. Someone somewhere will eventually catch one of these batteries on fire and the result could be catastrophic. It might not even be the battery that causes the fire, but no matter how safe they say it is there is always the potential. The technology has some real promise and generally the people using now are pretty sharp, but sooner or later some knuckle dragger is going to get a hold of these and do something stupid.

Personally I do not completely trust the technology yet, but see some major promise.
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Old 06-11-2013, 21:49   #12
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

Came across this for those who are interested in thinking about it:

Managing the lithium (ion) battery fire risk

Published: 23 July, 2013
The lithium (ion) battery fire problem, by Ron Butler, partner with LithFire-X.
The intention of this article is not to demonize lithium or lithium ion battery technology. Lithium batteries are great technologies. The truth is that these batteries power the world, and will in a much greater way in the future. However, risk managers should be aware of their primary downside; fire/explosion risk. This must be done so that proper precautions can be put in place to minimize the fire/explosion risk and improve safety.

Lithium-based batteries are inexpensive, lightweight, powerful, and environmentally safer than most alternatives. However, they generate large amounts of energy and the fire and explosion risk associated with them can be high. Storing large amounts of energy, whether it's in large batteries used in energy storage applications, smaller batteries used in electric vehicles, or even smaller batteries used in common electronic equipment, can be inherently dangerous.

Anytime energy is stored in a confined space it tries to escape, sometimes violently. Considerable effort should be made to manage the entire life cycle of these batteries, with special attention paid to safety and fire/explosion issues. Lithium battery risk and safety management remains a young yet important field. It presents challenges to a wide range of industries that manufacture, ship, store, and manipulate these powerful tools. It also presents challenges relative to risk management. How does the risk management industry quantify the threat? How do we protect against the potential dangers? What are the safety considerations? What are the underwriting issues?

Lithium batteries versus lithium ion batteries

For the purpose of ease of understanding, batteries referred to in this article will be called “lithium” batteries, unless specified. The reality is that lithium and lithium ion batteries are different. Lithium batteries, or primary batteries, are single use and incapable of recharge. They contain lithium metal which is highly combustible. The real value in lithium lies in the fact that they deliver extremely high energy densities in small configurations. They are used where recharge isn’t necessary or feasible. Common applications include military use (war fighter applications), medical applications, and certain consumer electronics applications, to name a few.

Lithium ion (Li-ion) batteries, or secondary batteries, are rechargeable and used world-wide. A lithium-ion battery is used for applications that require recharge capability. Lithium ion batteries provide high energy density, though lower than lithium primary, and can be recharged time after time. These batteries contain no free lithium metal, but do contain lithium ions and highly flammable electrolytes. Common applications that incorporate li-ion technology include laptops, cell phones, electric vehicles, hospital equipment, and energy storage systems, to name a few.

The growth of the lithium battery market

Risk managers might note that the current global market for lithium ion batteries is near $11.7 billion for 2012 (Frost and Sullivan). Risk managers might also note that the same Frost and Sullivan report expects this number to double by 2016. Yes, double in four years! These batteries are found in nearly every power requiring application. Airports see thousands of batteries go through their gates each day. Hospitals utilize battery power in more and more systems; from rechargeable gurneys to critical monitoring systems. Colleges and universities have them on campuses in huge amounts (i.e. laptops and smart devices). Lithium batteries are an integral part of everyday life now, with their use expected to explode as demand grows and manufacturing costs plummet. Their impact is enormous now; what will their impact be a few short years from now?

As the use of lithium batteries grows, so will the fire threat in the entire battery life cycle. Manufacturers, shippers, warehousing, distributors, retailers, and some end users, will have to become more aware of the fire and safety hazards that accompany these powerful tools. Every stop of the battery supply chain is responsible for the safe storage, and handling of the batteries.

Of course, risk managers have a real understanding of the negative impact that the unfortunate fire/explosion incident might have on an organization. It is for this reason that they have shown high interest in learning more about the issues and identifying best practices and methodologies for mitigating, preventing, and responding to battery fire emergencies.

Lithium battery fire behaviour

Lithium batteries are capable of spontaneous ignition and subsequent explosion due to overheating. Overheating may be caused by electrical shorting, rapid discharge, overcharging, manufacturers defect, poor design, or mechanical damage, among many other causes. Overheating results in a process called thermal runaway, which is a reaction within the battery causing internal temperature and pressure to rise at a quicker rate then can be dissipated.

Once one battery cell goes into thermal runaway, it produces enough heat to cause adjacent battery cells to also go into thermal runaway. This produces a fire that repeatedly flares up as each battery cell in turn ruptures and releases its contents. The result is the release of flammable electrolyte from the battery and, in the case of disposable lithium batteries, the release of molten burning lithium. An enormous issue is that these fires can’t be treated like “normal” fires and require specific training, planning, storage, and extinguishing interventions.

The amount of data relative to the fire behaviour of large format batteries is limited. However we can predict that when a battery goes into thermal runaway, the propagation creates identifiable markers; the battery behaves in a certain way. The fire may be a progressive burn-off or one that is explosive in nature. Both of these types of thermal events, as well as their negative by-products (jetted shrapnel, molten metal, burning electrolytes, and other matter), can be managed and contained in the appropriate storage and transport environments.

High-profile lithium battery fire incidents

There have been many high-profile fire/explosion instances that highlight lithium battery fire concerns. The most visible and recent issue has been the fires aboard the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. At the time this article was written, the fire cause was yet to be determined. However, the clear consensus seems to be that the fire (Boston fire) originated in the lithium ion battery or its battery management system (BMS). Though the fire issues have presented a red flag relative to the use of lithium ion batteries on airliners, the fact is that Boeing was/is pushing the limits on aviation technology development. For this, it seems, the company shouldn’t be indicted. The use of lithium ion or other high-capacity battery systems will only increase in the future as advanced systems will require, and be developed around, the added power capability.

While the fallout from the incident is yet to be decided, it can be inferred that some damage has been done, to the company, to the airline industry, and to the companies involved in the development of the airliners’ battery power systems. The use of power systems that employ lithium ion batteries may require some getting used to and evolution of suppression and containment systems that are focused on mitigating negative failure outcomes thus managing the risk and making it palatable to users.

The extent of lithium ion battery fire incidents does not end with Boeing – by far! Other incidents of notoriety have occurred in battery systems around the globe. The fires have occurred in energy storage systems (wind, solar, etc.), battery test environments, shipping and storage activities, and many other areas. Spontaneous battery pack ignitions have taken place in a number of electric vehicles, many involving fire or explosion. Though many in the automotive, fire-research, and emergency response industries consider the risk of fire in lithium battery-powered vehicles to be no greater than conventional vehicle systems, there is a general recognition that the by-products, heat, and flame created by these fires create uniquely dangerous conditions. These conditions include toxic substances release and volatile burn characteristics. In other words, while lithium battery fires might not be “more” dangerous, they are very different and uniquely dangerous.

Organizations that manufacture, ship, and store lithium batteries haven’t been immune to the fire incident. Thermal runaway events have contributed to a number of large-scale fires in facilities that contained stored lithium batteries. These fires are particularly high-impact as they involve large volumes of batteries stored in configurations that encourage fire spread.

Research and testing

Since the rapid exploitation of lithium batteries into commercial and industrial applications, little data exists relative to storage and fire response guidelines. The NFPA presents the most comprehensive collection of data relative to these issues. The Fire Protection Research Foundation of the NFPA published the Lithium-Ion Batteries Hazard and Use Assessment. This document provides suppressant research data, limited fire test data, and other information relative to fire and safety issues in small-capacity lithium ion batteries. The document serves as a fine place to start when developing a sound understanding of the fire/explosion risk issues associated with lithium batteries.

Ongoing research will eventually present firm protocols relative to the safe storage, fire management, and fire suppression issues of batteries. While movement is slow in this area, those concerned can rest assured that there are organizations willing to expend time and resources towards developing effective solutions. For example, the United States military (particularly the Army and Navy), have invested considerable resources towards tackling the fire/explosion safety issues and preparing their employees for the worst case scenario.

Managing the risks

Lithium battery fire risks can be managed effectively. Proper planning, risk assessment, storage methods, and response protocols can go a long way in managing the fire risks of lithium batteries. The following areas should be addressed when developing strategies for managing battery fire risks.

Storage/transport safety

There is inherent danger associated with the handling of batteries. In most cases, mechanical damage would probably rank as the highest risk factor for initiating a thermal runaway (fire/explosion) event. Improper handling can result in crush or puncture damage possibly leading to the release of electrolyte material or short-circuiting. These actions could result in thermal runaway and a resulting fire and/or explosion.

In the May of this year, FM Global along with NFPA’s Fire Protection Research Foundation released data relative to flammability characteristics of lithium ion batteries in storage. The report, which detailed large-scale fire tests of lithium ion batteries in warehouse storage, represents ground-breaking research into batteries in fire events. The test results seemed to confirm the following:

· Li-ion batteries present several unique fire hazards when involved in a fire, due to an ignitable electrolyte liquid contained within such products.

· Densely packed li-ion cylindrical cells and polymer cells behave differently than li-ion power tool packs in such fires.

· When bulk stored in corrugated board cartons, early fire extinguishment and cooling of the li-ion batteries is imperative to properly protect a facility.

· Existing protection solutions used for other types of high hazard products and materials can be effective for protecting li-ion batteries stored in bulk arrangements.

Though FM Global and the NFPA should be applauded for taking the initiative on this type of fire testing, the test activities had limitations. One of the glaring limitations of the testing activities was that it was limited to small-capacity 18650 cells. These are the kind commonly used in electronic devices (think AA size). Burn testing of higher-capacity batteries, like those found in electric vehicles, energy storage, and other configurations, may be called for as these present far different burn characteristics and outcomes. The fire management challenges presented by larger-capacity batteries shouldn’t be underestimated.

Though the NFPA and other standard writing organizations haven’t yet completed formal standards and guidelines by which to manage the battery fire issue, there are storage and transport strategies that may help manage the risks. Identifying consultants that specialize in lithium battery fire management and suppression is a great place to start. These companies are different from generic fire suppression consultants and distributors as they are well versed in the unique storage and suppression methods and risk management practices germane to lithium battery fire issues.

At minimum, an effective strategy for storing lithium batteries is to develop fire containment and suppression systems that would deal with the battery fire event. Systems like this would contain the fire event and encourage Suppression through Cooling, Isolation, and Containment, or SCIC. A prime consideration in this approach is that batteries are housed in environments that feature fire suppression systems that extinguish through cooling. Suppressing a lithium ion (secondary) battery is best accomplished by cooling the burning material; lithium primaries require separate, and unique, suppression methodologies.

Another consideration is that lithium batteries should be isolated from other battery chemistries and commodities (storage, transport, etc.). They should be stored (shipped) in environments that would effectively contain fires and toxic burn by-products. This is essential to health, safety, and preservation of property. Close attention should be paid to isolating batteries from general facilities by developing external storage or “satellite” storage. Battery storage farms would allow for storage off-site with just-in-time (JIT) delivery of batteries to the organization when needed.

Training

Since lithium batteries present critical challenges to organizations that possess them, it is recommended that training be included in any risk management strategy. As mentioned, batteries are part of nearly every function of business and personal life; they surround nearly everyone at all times. As a result, organizations and individuals alike should be aware of the unique hazards that these batteries bring to bear. Companies that possess lithium batteries in high volumes should work with experts to develop training that seeks to mitigate the fire issues and ensures additional layers of safety. Training might address issues like battery awareness or might include more detailed situational training such as battery fire behavior, emergency response procedures, and fire extinguisher use (lithium ion battery focus). This type of training lends itself well to the preservation of life and property.

Standard operating procedures

Effective battery standard operating procedures (SOP’s) will include processes that guide shipping and receiving, handling, daily use, storage, and other functions involving the batteries. Proper SOP’s will address every facet of the battery life cycle. These procedures provide the basis for safe use and manipulation and the starting point for developing effective risk management processes.

Emergency response procedures

In most instances, lithium battery fires shouldn’t necessarily be treated like common fires. The burn characteristics and toxic by-product release components are simply different. An organization might determine their level of risk through proper assessment, and create emergency response procedures based on sound response and battery handling data. Close attention should be paid to MSDS sheets and other suggestions from manufacturers and distributors. These documents prescribe possible methodologies for proper storage, handling, and emergency response. A caveat is that MSDS recommendations vary widely and at times are quite different, ultimately adding to some confusion.

However, some of the suggestions are quite good and can be used to develop a strong battery management process.

Where does risk management go from here?

It is clear that lithium battery technology, though great as a tool, has a downside. What is less clear is the path that needs to be taken to properly limit the fire/explosion risks and effectively shrink the downside. Proper planning, storage, and training can result in the development of robust battery management processes. Paying attention to the fire and explosion issues can go a long way in protecting valuable lives and property from these risks.


About the author

Ron Butler is partner with LithFire-X. LithFire-X provides specialised fire and safety management solutions to companies that manufacture, store, transport, and employ lithium and lithium ion power technologies.
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Old 06-11-2013, 22:41   #13
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

I would not be concerned about a boat house bank. LiFePo4 are proving very safe. The evidence is that they are least as safe as LA. (my only proviso is that the high energy delivery means fusing needs to be adequate)

The lithium battery chemistry used in laptops tablets, cell phone etc are much more dangerous. These can explode and burn with a fire that would be impossible to extinguish on a boat.
The reality is that instances of these problems are very rare. The devices are in widespread use and there have only been a few cases of problems.
While such a fire could potential be more dangerous on boat there are plenty of instances where it would be just as problematic in a house, such as when you are asleep, or the device is on your lap or in your pocket.
Few households charge their laptops and mobiles in a fire safe enclosure, or location. I think this reflects the low rate of risk.

The only practical steps I take(as someone living on a boat permanently) are to not purchase generic batteries of unknown quality. I avoid charging stuff while I am asleep if possible. For devices like torches, etc I use safer lithium chemistry batteries like LiFePo4, or IMR batteries.
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Old 06-11-2013, 22:42   #14
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

"Ron Butler is partner with LithFire-X. LithFire-X provides specialised fire and safety management solutions to companies that manufacture, store, transport, and employ lithium and lithium ion power technologies."

Really unbiased generalised rant there, no scare tactics to drum up business at all.
What he fails to mention is that while a lot of what he says applies to known volatile types of batteries, it does not apply to LiFePo4 which was developed to overcome those known faults.

"You're saying the Boeing engineers are dumb--that's tarring them for sure. I never said they were dumb"
Yes, I have no other way to describe putting a known volatile tech into a passenger jet.

"You're still ignoring the question I put up front"

No, there's the research suggestion that Steve and I put to you re. LiFePo4 and you're still ignoring my request for links or references to support your fears/claims.

I have no intention of addressing problems real or imagined with all the other "lithium" varieties out there. They are of no interest to me.
Cheers,
Mac
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Old 07-11-2013, 08:41   #15
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Re: Lithium Batteries /vs/ Fire safety?

I don't think that the OP has to prove anything or supply anything. If you think that LiFePO4 is safe then prove it. Don't demand that the OP prove they are unsafe. It sounds like LiFePO4 are quite safe to me and showing that this it true should be "easy".

A quick look at google gives lots of into. OF course all can be refuted - it is just the internet. And that is the problem with proving anything....

from Re: LiFePO4 & Fires..???? at LiFePO4 & Fires..???? - DIY Electric Car Forums

---
Fire? Not exactly. More like explosions and or lots of white smoke. But not actually flames.

I have seen it happening, and I have seen the results after the fact. In all cases, it was due to abuse of the battery. Some examples.
  • Shorted the 2 battery output cables during manufacture (seen it twice)
  • Two shorts to chassis, completing the circuit (seen it once)
  • Loose battery connection, arching, nearby combustible materials catch on fire, heat pops the LiFePO4 cells (seen it once)
  • Outboard charger left on overnight, no BMS control (seen it once)
  • Boat captain connecting over-discharged and damaged Li-ion batteries in parallel to fully charged ones (seen it once)
  • On purpose, for testing
---
It would be nice if any discussion on the merits and risks of LiFePO4 were reasonable and rational. LiFePO4 zealots need post humbly.
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