DirectTV satellite being moved to higher orbit bc damaged batteries about to explode

WalkIntoTheLight

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Well, that's cool. But I'd like to know how they know the batteries are about to explode. Are they just going by a voltage or resistance reading, or something simple like that? Or, is this just a case of operating the batteries out-of-spec, and now they're just being extra-cautious.
 

PhotonWrangler

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Well, that's cool. But I'd like to know how they know the batteries are about to explode. Are they just going by a voltage or resistance reading, or something simple like that? Or, is this just a case of operating the batteries out-of-spec, and now they're just being extra-cautious.

They did say that the thermal damage affected some but not all of the cells, so they apparently have some telemetry data for individual cells. However they also said they couldn't tell which cells were the damaged ones. I'd like to know the cause of the damage. Did the satellite stop spinning, causing one side to be exposed to the sun all of of the time? Did a cooling system fail? Did something short out and draw excessive current?
 

DoctorMemory

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Not the only way to spot it, but if a cell or battery doesn't come up to voltage on a charge, if it just sits there below the cut-off voltage turning all that charging current into heat -- it's gonna blow. You can't stop charging it, so only time will tell.
 

XC351

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From the article
"[FONT=&quot]Because of the craft's high location, redirecting the craft downward — where other in-use satellites are circling — so that it may eventually burn up in the atmosphere is not a viable option. "[/FONT]
 
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