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Old 22-07-2014, 11:01   #46
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Would you like to rethink that?
Actually no. but please tell me why you think otherwise.
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Old 22-07-2014, 11:13   #47
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Really? Where does this stuff come from?
Gee, look at Bruce Schwabs site though I admit he's being a bit liberal.

As to the full recharge I offer the following link which talks about memory effect in LiFePo, due to partial recharge.

Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI) :: Memory effect now also found in lithium-ion batteries

Back at you baby...
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Old 22-07-2014, 11:22   #48
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
Actually no. but please tell me why you think otherwise.
There is no data suggesting LiFePo should be or needs to be recharged to 100%. It's one of the BIG advantages to LI in a house bank application. Also while able to accept obscenely high C rates there is no need to recharge at anything other than what you would use for LA, therefore you can use the same/similar charge sources. However, and it's a big however, you do need to provide for monitoring and High and Low voltage protection and there are several safe and economical ways to do that. Again in House bank use there is no need to "fill" the battery or to "quick" charge it.

This doesn't make the chemistry suitable for everyone but let's try and keep the facts straight.

The costs are generally higher than La, however, when compared to high quality AGMs the cost to value ratio is not "too bad".

I have about $2500 in a 700 amp hour bank, and that's with controls and extras. Been operating 1.5 years and rarely push it above 85-90% SOC unless I anticipating using an extraordinary amount of power.
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Old 22-07-2014, 11:26   #49
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
Gee, look at Bruce Schwabs site though I admit he's being a bit liberal.

As to the full recharge I offer the following link which talks about memory effect in LiFePo, due to partial recharge.

Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI) :: Memory effect now also found in lithium-ion batteries

Back at you baby...
That's been out there for a while, and I think if you read the whole article the memory effect is very small and pretty much reversible. It's been discussed ad nauseum in the "Long LI thread".
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Old 22-07-2014, 12:15   #50
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by dlentz View Post
That's been out there for a while, and I think if you read the whole article the memory effect is very small and pretty much reversible. It's been discussed ad nauseum in the "Long LI thread".
Agreed it is reversible.

OK I was wrong about the need for 100% charge on LiFePo. Maybe a Senior moment..

I assume you did a bottom balance when you first got your batteries. Do you check your cell balance from time to time??
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Old 22-07-2014, 12:40   #51
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
Agreed it is reversible.

OK I was wrong about the need for 100% charge on LiFePo. Maybe a Senior moment..

I assume you did a bottom balance when you first got your batteries. Do you check your cell balance from time to time??
You listed a lot of valid points about Li vs LA, I was just trying to keep it accurate. Not trying to promote one over the other though.

No. I topped balance my pack. Top balancing is (imho) more applicable to house bank usage. IE: You don't want an out of balance cell going into a HV event before the rest of them. Since we don't discharge to the bottom, or really even near it, bottom balancing is less important (more applicable to the EV market that tries to get the absolute max range out of the batteries.).

I have a Junsi Cellogger that I use to monitor and alarm out of balance cells. I also have a HousePower BMS to control the HVC & LVC at the cell and pack level plus addition alarms, the shunt balancing capabilities are disabled.

As time goes by and the pack cycles, I have have found that the cells tend to converge rather than diverge in voltage, and have not done any "rebalancing" (just my experience YMMV). Again this is in house bank use, not high C environment charging/discharging.

PS: I do believe the original poster is a bit off base. I don't see LI as a easy panacea for a cruising boat. It takes a competent DIY to achieve safely and affordable.
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Old 22-07-2014, 12:57   #52
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by dlentz View Post
You listed a lot of valid points about Li vs LA, I was just trying to keep it accurate. Not trying to promote one over the other though.

No. I topped balance my pack. Top balancing is (imho) more applicable to house bank usage. IE: You don't want an out of balance cell going into a HV event before the rest of them. Since we don't discharge to the bottom, or really even near it, bottom balancing is less important (more applicable to the EV market that tries to get the absolute max range out of the batteries.).

I have a Junsi Cellogger that I use to monitor and alarm out of balance cells. I also have a HousePower BMS to control the HVC & LVC at the cell and pack level plus addition alarms, the shunt balancing capabilities are disabled.

As time goes by and the pack cycles, I have have found that the cells tend to converge rather than diverge in voltage, and have not done any "rebalancing" (just my experience YMMV). Again this is in house bank use, not high C environment charging/discharging.

PS: I do believe the original poster is a bit off base. I don't see LI as a easy panacea for a cruising boat. It takes a competent DIY to achieve safely and affordable.
Sounds like you have it covered quite nicely then. Well, I'm definitely at the cheap end of the battery gene pool. So until the LI batteries drops a wee bit, I'll be hanging with low tech FLA side of things.
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Old 22-07-2014, 13:25   #53
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

We've been on the cusp of a commercial breakthrough in battery technology, solar efficiency and fuel cells powered by water for decades.

The maturity and cost efficiency of rugged deep cycle lead acid batteries and solid state multi stage inverter chargers makes for reliable energy systems. IMHO.

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Old 22-07-2014, 13:29   #54

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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

sailorchick-
""The odds of fire in a Model S, at roughly 1 in 8,000 vehicles, are five times lower than those of an average gasoline car and, when a fire does occur, the actual
combustion potential is comparatively small," Musk said in a March 28 statement."

as quoted in http://cars.chicagotribune.com/fuel-efficient/news/chi-stolen-tesla-crash-surprises-safety-experts-20140710

So, Musk is lying? He seems to differ with your figures.

This, again, is why I suggest the industry needs to learn from Hertz-vs-Avis and get their statistics together, along with their alleged facts.

And let's not forget the drivers who blow up gasoline stations every year, often by lighting a cigarette. So far, no one has blown up an electric charging station. (Although I'm sure they will in time.)
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Old 22-07-2014, 13:32   #55
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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The Lithium Iron batteries have been around long enough that I feel pretty sure we can both consider them safe, and a relatively mature technology.
But they are neither turn key, nor are they readily available in out of the way locations.
Lead acid are both.
In my opinion if your the type that likes to "fiddle" with things and want the "best" then the Lithium is the way to go, but if you really don't even want to have to bother checking the water level of your batteries but go on ahead and do that monthly and certainly don't want to do anymore than that, then LA is the way to go, add in your a world traveler and go where shipping is difficult, then maybe not, but concede I don't know the rate of infant mortality of the Lithium cells, how they may be damaged, and whether or not carrying a couple of spare cells may be all you need to do.
I just don't know enough about them, first hand, but feel they are safe
While lithium batteries have a reasonable safety record they offer additional hazards greater than lead acid batteries. Any engineering risk assessment highlights the difference in detail

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Old 22-07-2014, 14:53   #56
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Oh agreed that Lifepo is safer then LICO. But a LIfepo cell only has ~35% of the capacity of a LICO cell. That is why, folks like Boeing and Tesla are using LICO. At the charge and discharge current ratings of Lifepo, LiCo are also pretty safe.

I'm not sure LI, Either LICO, or LiFePo are really suitable for cruising boats. Like AGM they really like/need to be completely recharged. Which is tricky to do while cruising with solar. That they can take higher charge currents is also meaningless on a boat with 10 to 30 amps of solar in a 360 amp bank. Their higher discharge currents are also not needed, unless you have an electric boat.

Yes they weight less, but unless your racing, who cares of you save 100 pounds or so. Oh Folks with Cat's maybe. Mono sailors, its just a bit more ballast.

They can discharge to 80% which is cool, but you still need enough solar to recharge them in 6 hours. That they can take a ~1000 amps recharging is nice, but your going to have a maximum 200 amps and most only 100 amps which falls within FLA range anyway and maybe 30 amps on solar.

Yes they have advantages, but most doesn't matter to a cruising sailor.
To replace the usable capacity of a typical 6 6V 660hr battery bank, one would typically use 400Ah of Li. This would result in ~280 fewer pounds of weight on the boat. We are a catamaran, so that is important to us, but I think even mono owners would like that loss.

I don't understand your thinking around charging sources. Li doesn't need to be charged at high C rates, and as long as your charging sources kept up with your usage with LA's, it seems like they would equally be fit for Li's. I'm talking solar, wind, good larger alternators and AC chargers - I understand that Li acceptance rates could overtax small alternators.

One only needs to put in what one takes out. If a smaller bank is taken down 80%, and that is the equivalent of taking 40% out of a larger LA bank, then it won't be any more of a problem to bring that 80% up to full charge than it would the 40%. It is all absolute - not relative.

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Old 22-07-2014, 15:12   #57
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Yes they have advantages, but most doesn't matter to a cruising sailor.
Ahhhh....well....no.
Forget the weight.
Forget about the fact that they can take as much charge as you can throw at them to save on generator run time.
Forget about the face that there is no voltage sag.
Forget about having to equalize your LA batteries and burning holes in your favorite cruiser shirts.

What matters is the fact that most cruisers have a very hard time getting their LA battery EVER charged back to a full SOC when living at anchor and away from the dock. This in turn kills LA battery bank through sulfanization.

I'm replacing my 6-6v T-105's LA with with a 400AH LiOn bank as the internet experts debate it, praise it, and Poo Poo it. Progress move forward despite the naysayers and the Pioneers take the arrows.
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Old 22-07-2014, 15:31   #58
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
Ahhhh....well....no.
Forget the weight.
Forget about the fact that they can take as much charge as you can throw at them to save on generator run time.
Forget about the face that there is no voltage sag.
Forget about having to equalize your LA batteries and burning holes in your favorite cruiser shirts.

What matters is the fact that most cruisers have a very hard time getting their LA battery EVER charged back to a full SOC when living at anchor and away from the dock. This in turn kills LA battery bank through sulfanization.

I'm replacing my 6-6v T-105's LA with with a 400AH LiOn bank as the internet experts debate it, praise it, and Poo Poo it. Progress move forward despite the naysayers and the Pioneers take the arrows.
Rich,

I just passed 450 cycles last week, accelerated cycle testing is no small task believe me, and I conducted yet another capacity test at cycle 451. I am well into year two of this accelerated cycling but getting to 400 was hard work. It is even harder during the sailing season..

The bank is still putting up exactly what it did when new using the identical test protocol and instruments. No changes in capacity in 450 cycles. Each of these cycles has been to 80% DOD or as close to it as I can get. Sometimes we know we'll be motoring so we start charging at 70% DOD instead of 80% DOD....

When we come back to the mooring I leave it where it is. I could care less if it is at 20% SOC 40% SOC or 60% SOC as it is not phased by this.. I also don't leave the solar on, no need to... Last weekend was good sailing (well ok decent sailing) so it is currently at 18% SOC, after today's round of heat shrinking.. If our bank is sitting for any period of time, it is rarely if ever left above 70% SOC...

I was working on another boat in the anchorage today and needed to heat shrink about 17 2/0 & some 4/0 battery lugs, with both adhesive lined shrink and then clear over that with labels between. The owners bank was crapping out on low voltage after two shrinks. I told him last year his batts were beyond dead... Running the engine would have helped but it was too hot to be sitting in an engine bay next to an 800 pound heat sink. His solar panels were no help, batts are beyond gone.....

I took my skiff over to our boat and shrunk the remaining 15 with our inverter, no engine running.. This was done at approx 20% SOC on the LFP bank and the voltage hardly sagged enough to even be noticeable even with a 145A load at approx 20% SOC....

Our bank has performed exactly as it was designed to, amazingly well.....
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Old 22-07-2014, 15:32   #59
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

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sailorchick-
""The odds of fire in a Model S, at roughly 1 in 8,000 vehicles, are five times lower than those of an average gasoline car and, when a fire does occur, the actual
combustion potential is comparatively small," Musk said in a March 28 statement." So, Musk is lying? He seems to differ with your figures.
I love what Mr. Musk is doing with telsa and spacex. Fantastic stuff. But my numbers came from the NHTSA. Lets just say Mr. Musk hopes to sell lots O cars. I agree that the combustion potential is small compared to gasoline. But a failure of a single LICO cell has caused several car fires. This is why Telsa surrounds the batterys with 1/4" plate aluminum.

I expect to see more car fires in EV's using LICO.
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Old 22-07-2014, 15:43   #60
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Re: Upgrading your Battery Banks and Alternator in 2014 is a Waste of Money.

Well reading this thread just reinforces to me the FLA and AGM are gonna be around for a while.

Battery science is not my hobby, sailing is.

If I have to put this much thinking into one technology on my boat it's not gonna be on my boat. As Sailorboy1 keeps saying, "Batteries are the price of poker." Do your best to get a "no brainer" bank that will do your mission and wait 5 years to see what's happening.
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