Lithium AA vs. CR123A - essentially the same? Or different chemistry?

R

R.ticle One

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Hey guys,

I've been reading around, but I'm still not sure about this; I see that there are Lithium, non rechargeable primaries in a AA form factor, which is appealing to me. But, I'm still loathe to use CR123As in more than a single battery configuration.

As far as chemistry, and I guess, therefore, safety goes - is there a difference between these lithium AAs and lithium CR123As?

I'm leaning to getting a stock 6P and Malkoff dropin, and extension tubes to use the 6P with normal AAs, or maybe the Energizer "Titanium" ones. Now I see there are Energizer Lithium AA batteries, which look great based on their common form factor, longer shelf life, and I think, slightly higher voltage. However, is using these in multi-battery configurations running the same risk as doing so with CR123A primaries?

Many thanks.
 
Black Rose

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As far as chemistry, and I guess, therefore, safety goes - is there a difference between these lithium AAs and lithium CR123As?
Lithium AAs and Lithium CR123As have different chemistries.

The Lithium AAs do not have the potentially explosive traits that the CR123A cells do.

The Lithium AAs are around 1.7 volts whereas the CR123A cells are 3.0 volts.

To run a 6P on AAs (if there are tubes for that) you would need to use 4 Lithium AA cells to get similar voltage as 2 CR123A cells. It would also be one really long light :)

If you are wanting to run a stock 6P with a Malkoff, I think you would be better served with a protected 17670 cell such as the ones AW sells, and use CR123A cells as backups.
 
R

R.ticle One

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Hiya Black Rose,

That's good to know about the chemistry - do the lith. AAs also lack the venting potential of CR123As? Basically, are they as safe as Alkaline or NiMH AAs, just with a bit more voltage in them? Do I have to worry about using lithium AA primaries in multiple configurations if the one battery has more juice than the other, or is there still no real risk?

Yup, I read yesterday that using a Solarforce extender, and optionally, a Surefire A14 or A19, I could run a 6P on 2 or 3 AAs...using an M30 type dropin for some nice floody light. I do realize it extends the light by some length, but I do like the availability of AA batteries.

Thanks again!
 
Black Rose

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I asked the same question previously and the answer was that there is no risk of a :poof: when using primary lithium AAs in a multi-cell application.
 
R

R.ticle One

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D'oh! (As in, d'oh!, sorry I missed that post). Thank you. I may consider keeping some AA lith. primaries around then. Many thanks!
 
gswitter

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I asked the same question previously and the answer was that there is no risk of a :poof: when using primary lithium AAs in a multi-cell application.
Really?

I haven't heard of such an event with the Energizer-branded lithium AA (or AAA) primaries, but I've never looked into it either.
 
R

R.ticle One

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Ack! That's a bit frightening.

Really?

I haven't heard of such an event with the Energizer-branded lithium AA (or AAA) primaries, but I've never looked into it either.
 
Black Rose

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Really?

I haven't heard of such an event with the Energizer-branded lithium AA (or AAA) primaries, but I've never looked into it either.
That battery was not an Energizer cell and I believe BS discontinued development of that cell because of the ongoing issues.

I've never heard of it happening with Energizer cells either.
 
R

R.ticle One

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This is also true. Hmm...

That battery was not an Energizer cell and I believe BS discontinued development of that cell because of the ongoing issues.

I've never heard of it happening with Energizer cells either.
 
E

etc

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FWIW, I took a Surefire 9P with Malkoff M60 and 3x123 Surefire cells and drained them down to zero. I got a few hours of good runtime and then a long tail. I ran them down until they were no brighter than a cig light.

I forget the actual voltage they stopped at but it was pretty low.

No interesting fireworks but then I monitored it.
 
gswitter

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FWIW, I took a Surefire 9P with Malkoff M60 and 3x123 Surefire cells and drained them down to zero. I got a few hours of good runtime and then a long tail. I ran them down until they were no brighter than a cig light.

I forget the actual voltage they stopped at but it was pretty low.

No interesting fireworks but then I monitored it.
What were you expecting?

Provided the cells are reasonably balanced to begin with, running them down to nothing is fine.
 
gswitter

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That battery was not an Energizer cell and I believe BS discontinued development of that cell because of the ongoing issues.
I've come across a few other brands of AA lithium primaries in the past six months or so. (Of course, now that I'm looking for them, I can't find a link.) I assume they're the same or similar cells that BS used to import and sell. Something to be aware of.

Again, I've yet to see a report of problems with the Energizers, and I've been using them for years in single- and multi-cell set-ups without issue. I've had a pair of L91s in an L2D in my wife's car for two or three years now - rarely used but always dependable.

However, I also don't recall seeing the L91/L92s subjected to a Newbie-style test in an attempt to trigger a failure/vent/etc. Is there something/anything inherently safer about the Energizers?
 
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ltiu

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Is there something/anything inherently safer about the Energizers?

Yes, because it's Energizer.

Imagine the poop they would get if they have 3xploding batteries, the class action law suits, the bad publicity, the battery recalls.

I remember reading somewhere that L91/92 have a circuit inside that shuts the battery down (cuts the circuit) if a short is detected or a high temperature threshold is crossed.
 
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Mikellen

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Originally posted by "Itiu" "I remember reading somewhere that L91/92 have a circuit inside that shuts the battery down (cuts the circuit) if a short is detected or a high temperature threshold is crossed."


Wow! that would be great! Can anyone confirm this? This would put my mind to ease about using these Energizer L91s.
 
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wapkil

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Originally posted by "Itiu" "I remember reading somewhere that L91/92 have a circuit inside that shuts the battery down (cuts the circuit) if a short is detected or a high temperature threshold is crossed."


Wow! that would be great! Can anyone confirm this? This would put my mind to ease about using these Energizer L91s.
You may want to read Energizer's Product Safety Data Sheet and the Application Manual for these batteries. They have a PTC circuit built in that should prevent them from overheating but the the PSDS states that:

Handling: Accidental short circuit for a few seconds will not seriously affect the battery. Prolonged short circuit will cause the battery to lose energy,
generate significant heat and can cause the safety release vent to open. Sources of short circuits include jumbled batteries in bulk containers, metal
jewelry, metal covered tables or metal belts used for assembly of batteries into devices. Damaging a lithium battery may result in an internal short circuit.

The contents of an open battery, including a vented battery, when exposed to water, may result in a fire and/or explosion. Crushed or damaged batteries may result in a fire.​
 
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Mikellen

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Thanks wapkil for those links. They are very informative.
 

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