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Thread: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

  1. #61
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Sounds interesting, Jar
    The only light I need now is the "light at the end of the tunnel".....

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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    I thought I'd break this out to see if anyone would like to volunteer.

    I do have code running to spit the A/D value of one channel out the serial port now.

    If any programmers would like to help out, and are familiar with these chips, I'm looking for something to read all of the 8 A/D channels as single ended in the 10-bit mode, convert to decimal, and spit out a string where each channel reading is separated by a space, and then each string of data from all the channels are separated by a comma or carriage return/LF. Use of the internal 2.56V refrence is fine, I can scale accordingly with external circuitry. 9600 baud rate would be fine. It doesn't matter if it is in ASM or C, just as long as AVRStudio can handle the code.

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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Titanium cells from AmondoTech


    I just got in a batch I ordered fresh.

    Ordered 08/06/2006, Order number xxxxx, Part Number TPEN-TCR123A

    Arrived today, 08/09/2006

    Just tried the simple short circuit test, and one sustained over 5 Amps and get really dang hot, it didn't drop lower, even after 2 minutes. Normally 123 cells, even BS cells- drop to below 1.5A within a minute. I did not continue the test. I may do more of this short testing on the Titanium cells later.

    I also short circuited a second cell, and by the time the short was on the cell for two minutes, it finally started dropping due to the PTC. The outside body of this cell reached temperatures that were in the 155-160 degrees F range before the PTC kicked in, which is a bit higher than an other cell I've tested. Likely, the cell is even hotter inside...

    Additionally, I just had a venting incident with the AmondoTech Titanium cells. I'll go check how the video turned out in a bit, possibly post it here.

    See post below for video of the event.
    Last edited by NewBie; 08-10-2006 at 07:42 AM. Reason: add info

  4. #64
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    as always many thanks for your hard work!

    not looking good for titanium CR123 cells...

    wonder if both private label cells by battery station and titanium lithium cells are made by the same chinese mfg?

  5. #65
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by NewBie
    I thought I'd break this out to see if anyone would like to volunteer.

    I do have code running to spit the A/D value of one channel out the serial port now.

    If any programmers would like to help out, and are familiar with these chips, I'm looking for something to read all of the 8 A/D channels as single ended in the 10-bit mode, convert to decimal, and spit out a string where each channel reading is separated by a space, and then each string of data from all the channels are separated by a comma or carriage return/LF. Use of the internal 2.56V refrence is fine, I can scale accordingly with external circuitry. 9600 baud rate would be fine. It doesn't matter if it is in ASM or C, just as long as AVRStudio can handle the code.
    Newbie, as I told you in CPF-Chat, I would like to help building a CPF Battery tester, after reading the complete ZTS MBT patent I think I got the idea of what they are doing:

    it seems they did the following: took a bunch of new diff chemistry batteries, measure current with different loads and made a table for it, then used the batteries a little and added another row to the table, loop 3 more times for 5 steps from 100% to 0 in 20% increments. Then used this table and the circuit against other batteries and compare. Bingo, you have a batt tester... looks lame, am I missing something? There is even block circuits in there to help.

    Something like this can be implemented using mid range PIC uC (16F or 18F series) these also have internal voltage references 10 bit AD/converters and comparators, some even have USB bundled (not tried that yet)

    I dont know how to program atmels, thats why I offer help with Microchip PIC.


    Tell me if I can help somehow, you're doing a great job!


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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Okay, here is the video from the very first test run of the fresh Lithium Primary CR123A cells from AmondoTech, aka Titanium, P/N TPEN-TCR123A which arrived at my house tonight, shipped direct from AmondoTech.

    This one is unedited, make note of how the light just winks out, and seconds later, it vents:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo.wmv

    This is one that is edited, to just include the bulb winking out, the very short pause, then the venting incident, with just the venting in slow motion-this one is also much smaller for low bandwidth users:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondsm.wmv

  7. #67
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by NewBie
    Okay, here is the video from the very first test run of the fresh Lithium Primary CR123A cells from AmondoTech, aka Titanium, P/N TPEN-TCR123A which arrived at my house tonight, shipped direct from AmondoTech.

    This one is unedited, make note of how the light just winks out, and seconds later, it vents:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo.wmv

    This is one that is edited, to just include the bulb winking out, the very short pause, then the venting incident, with just the venting in slow motion-this one is also much smaller for low bandwidth users:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondsm.wmv
    Woah, that is one scary video. The explosion/venting was so powerful that the tailcap or bezel blew off, hit the side of the barrel and ricochet upwards...the plastic/glass panel over the barrel physically moved (not just a budge) and the temp. skyrocketed to 4 times the base or so =/.

    Thankyou for your continued efforts into the venting matter NewBie, it is much appreciated and i am definitely looking forward to your results/data.

    Not a good one for Amondotech Titanium cells...

  8. #68
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Hi Newbie, I just read this thread start to finish and watched almost all of the videos (except that huge one)

    Amazing work - thanks.

    Is it correct that the cell which is failing / venting is consistently the one with a full charge, not the one which is partially discharged ? Any idea why ? Approx. how much current are you pulling in your test - 1.5 amps ?

    Thanks HarryN
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by HarryN
    Hi Newbie, I just read this thread start to finish and watched almost all of the videos (except that huge one)

    Amazing work - thanks.

    Is it correct that the cell which is failing / venting is consistently the one with a full charge, not the one which is partially discharged ? Any idea why ? Approx. how much current are you pulling in your test - 1.5 amps ?

    Thanks HarryN

    Normally the cell that is failing is the one partially discharged, but not always. Last I measured the Streamlight Night Hunter/Tactical Light 2 incandescent bulb, it pulls 1.21A. The PM6 pulled a tiny bit more.

    Ever since I started getting BS ZTS tested cells, the partially discharged one has always failed. So, it may be that even though I'd deplete one cell by 20-30% (still see failures of 10-40% depletion, but not as repeatable), before I got the ZTS tested 100% ones, that the other cell on occasion was even weaker than this, and the failure occured it it, instead.

    This is one of the reasons I'm building and programming the data acquisition unit. This way I can log voltages of each cell, current, temperature of each cell, and such. This should give us an idea of what really occurs before a vent or explosion, and maybe even what is really different between the two and a run that occasionally doesn't fail.

  10. #70
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    Drool Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by NewBie
    Okay, here is the video from the very first test run of the fresh Lithium Primary CR123A cells from AmondoTech, aka Titanium, P/N TPEN-TCR123A which arrived at my house tonight, shipped direct from AmondoTech.

    This one is unedited, make note of how the light just winks out, and seconds later, it vents:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo.wmv

    This is one that is edited, to just include the bulb winking out, the very short pause, then the venting incident, with just the venting in slow motion-this one is also much smaller for low bandwidth users:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondsm.wmv


    How long did the higher temperatures last? That is FRIGHTENING. Is it enough heat to ignite paper or plastic?
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Paper ignites at 451F (~233C).
    The shadows are darkest during the day.

  12. #72
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    just trying to keep important failure info together. originally posted here: http://candlepowerforums.com/vb/show...=128059&page=5


    Quote Originally Posted by NewBie
    Unfortunately, I do not see how this fits at all in the failure mode I've been able to replicate rather repeatably.

    Two cells ZTS tested at 100%, ran a few dozen, zero events.

    Get two more 100% ZTS tested cells. Take one and discharge it by 10-40%, and you get an event over 75% of the time, and once you dial it in, I've had up to seven failures in a row.

    Take a depleted cell, and a 100% cell, hook them up, zero events.


    I don't buy the water excuse. Could you elaborate on this theory and my observed results Ray-of-Light?

    I could understand a cell that was hot (increase in chemical reactivity) due to a high performance 1-1.5A draw light, plus reverse charged (e.g. mis-matched cells).

    However, one cell depleted beyond 50%, I don't see the failure mode. Nor do I see it with one fully depleted.

    But if the draw goes above 1.6A, even on mis-matched cells I see no failures, and the cells don't sustain draws above this very long, as they get hot, the PTC starts kicking in, and I see no failure events.

    e.g. connect the dots.

  13. #73
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    Buttrock Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel
    Paper ignites at 451F (~233C).
    Yep, I wasn't sure how close the probe was placed to the source of the heat.
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Tonight, I had spare time to do a second test run on the Lithium Primary CR123A cells from AmondoTech, aka Titanium.

    This event was just a rather minor cell disassembly, and the 1/2" polycarbonate (Lexan) plate got lifted from the blast, with a few embers that blew themselves right out of the bucket, when it slightly lifted the heavy protection shield. It even managed to knock the temperature meter clear off the top and onto the deck.

    The link below is for a slow motion video of the event itself. Unfortunately, the sun had set and it got dark in the middle of testing, and I didn't have the light on:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amon2sm.wmv

    Next is a real time video of the event, with additional video of the aftermath:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo2.wmv


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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Okay, we have three vents in a row for the AmondoTech Titanium CR123A cells, P/N TPEN-TCR123A. Note the temperature at which you see the vent happen, it is in degrees Fahrenheit:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo3.wmv

  16. #76
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    AmondoTech's Titanium cells, venting four for four:

    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo4.wmv

  17. #77

    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Newbie,
    Are you keeping a simple log of each test? Something that can be viewed in a spread sheet?

    If I am following your tests correctly, it would seem that the likelihood of an event or venting varies from brand to brand. Both the frequency and level or magnitude of the venting does not seem to be independent of brand of cell.
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  18. #78
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    I posted the venting rate earlier.

    I'm just testing a batch of cells while I work on the test rig (multitasking), to find out the propensity of each brand for failure right now.

    I'd just gotten in this order from AmondoTech, and with two folks who had problems with the AmondoTech Titanium cells, I wanted to find out what the risk was quickly, so we'd have an idea of how these cells were really doing. That way folks would have a good idea of the associated risk of this brand of Primary Lithium CR123A cell.


    Here we have five for five:
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo5.wmv


    I'll get into more serious testing and data logging when I finish this data logging test rig. I have two of the signal conditioning chips that arrived yesterday from Digikey, I am only missing one chip now. I have one A/D port reading great, spitting it out to the PC, now I just need to get the A/D mux going, and send each port out to the PC. I'm using interrupt vector based programming, which is a little different than I'm typically used to.

  19. #79
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    This is the first double stage venting incident I've seen. First is the normal vent, then a bit later (keep watching), there is a secondary venting incident from the same cell. The cell reached 711 degrees Fahrenheit in the end.

    This is vent incident six for six for the AmondoTech Titanium cells. Be patient, this one is a big one, weighing in at 21 MB.
    http://www.molalla.net/~leeper/amondo6.wmv

  20. #80
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    WOW!!! that's scary!
    second vent occured at aprox. 372 degrees

    does anyone know who the actual manufactor of these cells are?

    my concern is private label mfg can produce the same cells for a large number of unsuspecting customers. all with different labels.

    armondo tech needs know results of these tests.

  21. #81
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links



    OMG That was scary! 711 degrees!?! That's hot enough to ignite anything in close vicinity to the cells; thinking the rubber tailcaps here. This could ignite any rubber or plastic parts in the light, causing a fire.

    I'm probably just restating the obvious here. But still, yikes.


    Something that has me worrrying... the ADT wireless alarm setup in my home uses CR123 cells for many (if not all) of the wireless fire alarms (and I think other monitors too). I haven't seen a test (that I remember) demonstrating a single-cell vent- is this possible? I have to believe these devices are low-draw, but I have already "burned" (sorry-bad pun) through a couple of 123 cells on my fire alarms. What a terrible irony that would be...
    Last edited by Chronos; 08-13-2006 at 06:56 AM. Reason: Thoughts about ADT?
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  22. #82
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    In an effort to expand the scale of Newbie's testing, I will be sending him some mismatched cells.

    Newbie has shown that if you partially drain a cell and couple it in series with a new cell, venting can occur. We have been using the ZTS tester to match cells, but the question keeps coming up "Will ZTS mismatched new cells vent in the same way as when you physically mismatch cells?"

    I will be sending Newbie cells that tested at 60%, 40%, 20%, 10%, and one cell that came in at 0%. Along with these cells will be those that tested at 100% to pair up with the mismatched cells.

    All of these cells are brand new and have never been used. They are Titanium cells that came from the stock that Wayne pulled off the shelves when he discovered that he had a bad batch of cells back in April. I did some testing on the cells demonstrating what parameters the ZTS tester was looking at, and decided that they may be able to assist us in understanding what is going on with the venting of cells.

    Wayne took some cells from this batch back to the factory, along with a ZTS tester and a SureFire M6, to demonstrate the problem to them. As I recall, the result was that while the factory does a test similar to the ZTS test, they were using different resistor values. I believe these values were adjusted to subject the cells to a higher load. I have heard that Wayne has been continuing to do random checks of the new cells he has been receiving, including ZTS testing, and has been pleased with the results.

    Since this batch of cells has some known issues, it is my hope that we can get some meaningful information from them.

    Newbie asked me if the testing of these cells could be delayed until he got his data logging device functional. I left the decision up to him. We are all interested in the ability of the ZTS tester to add to the safety of using multi-celled lights, but we also have to keep in mind that this is a destructive test with a limited amount of samples. Also, keep in mind that no testing like this has been done, so we don't know how the results will play out.

    It is my hope that this will not be a total waste of Newbie's time and efforts...

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  23. #83
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    what a violent reaction, that is HOT, I cant believe that little cell is possible to do something so powerful. Imagine if 2 or 3 cells did that in a light? I have 2 cells sitting here in front of me, and im thinking they are going to disapear as soon as possible. Doesnt flashlight reviews recomend using Titanium cells??? Doesnt seam like a good idea any more... Good work newbie! Im glad that diddnt happen inside of my HD45!!! I used to keep my stock of cells next to my bed near my lights...

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  24. #84
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by nakahoshi
    what a violent reaction, that is HOT, I cant believe that little cell is possible to do something so powerful. Imagine if 2 or 3 cells did that in a light? I have 2 cells sitting here in front of me, and im thinking they are going to disapear as soon as possible. Doesnt flashlight reviews recomend using Titanium cells??? Doesnt seam like a good idea any more... Good work newbie! Im glad that diddnt happen inside of my HD45!!! I used to keep my stock of cells next to my bed near my lights...

    -bobby

    Keep in mind, the flames and sparks are even hotter. The white color sparks you see in some of the videos are lithium on fire, which is about 3000F.

    The container has a limited amount of oxygen in it, so it serves to extinguish most the events.

  25. #85

    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Would an event in a waterproof torch be much less then since there's correspondingly less oxygen?
    The shadows are darkest during the day.

  26. #86
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel
    Would an event in a waterproof torch be much less then since there's correspondingly less oxygen?

    Doubtful. Even a Surefire 9P, the big heavy duty robust light that it is, had it's side ripped open by one of these events.

    It takes alot to contain one of these 123 cells...

  27. #87
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    NewBie,

    Just curious if you are keeping track of the lot numbers on the batteries. I'm wondering if maybe the difference in chemistry between batches may be part of the problem (and if so, why are they so sensitive).

    Also, just saw that Dell is recalling 4.1 million laptops with lithium-ion batteries made by Sony. They have been overheating and catching fire. It covers laptops sold from April 2004 through July 2006.

    Weldon

  28. #88
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Newbie - after purposely draining some cells to create a mismatch, are you using a ZTS tester to check the remaining capacity? If so, wouldn't that be a very similar, if not identical, scenario to testing unused cells that show a mismatch on the ZTS? Of course, testing both cases is best, but just to try to get more information on the current test results, this would be good to know. Thanks for all the work!
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  29. #89
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Hello JSR,

    Battery Station, Titanium, and several other CR123 cells have a tendency to initially drop in voltage, then pick back up when the chemistry becomes activated. Testing those cells reveals that there is some difference in capacity, but not the 30-40% that is indicated by initial ZTS testing.

    Once you use the cells, the ZTS results are more accurate.

    When Newbie tests these mismatched new cells, we will have another data point on this problem.

    Tom
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    Default Re: 123 Primary Lithium cell info/testing/links

    Nice work Jar - That is going to be one charred bucket.

    The secondary venting is interesting. I have seen that on some other reactions before (not cells) but it took more like 30 minutes for it to happen. Interestingly, sometimes, the secondary reaction is worse than the first.
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