Remaining Battery Capacity

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jerm03
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Remaining Battery Capacity

I have a Word doc with Estimating Remaining Capacity in Li-ion Batteries. I suspect it was by HKJ.
I find it useful, however there is a great difference in Sanyo and AW vs Panasonic when the voltage drops below 3.7 V. The chart does not include Samsung batteries.
Is there info on Samsung batteries as to remaining capacities?
Thanks,
Jerry

jon_slider
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I dont know what doc you have, I googled your text and found this
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1155/2013/154831

I dont understand it

it seems there are chargers that do all the estimating..

imho 3.6v is half empty, and it is good for LiIon not to be deep cycled

I hope you find the info you seek

mattheww1950
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I suspect the reason you may not find much on Samsung is that Samsung has produced a very wide variety of Li-ion cells with widely varying capacity and current supply capabilities. Each of those variation is the result of variations in the construction and/or chemistry of the battery, and latter largely determines the actual behavior of the cell. Consequently any relationship between voltage and remaining capacity is going to be specific to whatever specific Samsung cell is involved. Given the vast number of different cells the Samsung has made, I doubt anyone is willing to even make the effort to try to categorize each and every one of them.

jerm03
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Thanks. The article I have is just a chart.
Here are the values for remaining capacity for three batteries at 3.6 V.

AW 2600 mAh 0%
Sanyo 2600 m/ah 2%
Panasonic 1860B 3400mAh 37%.

Seems a wide range of values.
Jerry

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Pretty useless chart if it has that kind of discrepancy for brand name batteries.

Charts like that are estimates. As such they are possibly better than nothing.

WalkIntoTheLight
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You really have to do run-time tests on your battery to be sure.

But, as a general rule, here is what I find I my 18650 batteries (various Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony):

4.20v 100%
4.10v 90%
4.00v 80%
3.90v 65%
3.75v 50%
3.60v 30%
3.30v 10%
2.90v 0%

That’s a rough rule for remaining energy (in watt-hours, not amp-hours, since I use a regulated light with a boost driver to do comparisons). It seems pretty consistent for the popular 18650 cells (30Q’s, VTC6, GA), as well as some older cells.

Protected cells and 14500 cells seem to have way higher voltages when they’re just about empty. I have no idea why.

Usually I top up anything under 3.9v, so I’m never really worried about cells getting low.

jerm03
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Thanks, WalkIntoTheLight, I sometimes try to do run-time tests,but I always fail to keep watching and do not do a good job.
Jerry

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I do runtime tests using 15 or 30 minute alarms on my phone. At each alarm i take lumen teadings plus voltmeter readings

jerm03
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Thanks, Jon, I might try that.
Jerry

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I like lights that have battery level indicators, which i crosscheck w a voltmeter.

Zebra does it, my Utorch S1 mini does it, although its not well calibrated, it helps. At one flash i know its at 3.7v. Without having to open the light.

my 0light S1 Mini has a low battery indicator light that turns on Red. That’s really idiot proof for me. It does that at 3.4v. I carry a spare battery, in a spare light Wink lol

I hope you find stategies that fit your needs

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Jerry, is this what you were talking about?

https://tinyurl.com/y9d5c6y5

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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
You really have to do run-time tests on your battery to be sure. But, as a general rule, here is what I find I my 18650 batteries (various Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony): 4.20v 100% 4.10v 90% 4.00v 80% 3.90v 65% 3.75v 50% 3.60v 30% 3.30v 10% 2.90v 0% That's a rough rule for remaining energy (in watt-hours, not amp-hours, since I use a regulated light with a boost driver to do comparisons). It seems pretty consistent for the popular 18650 cells (30Q's, VTC6, GA), as well as some older cells. Protected cells and 14500 cells seem to have way higher voltages when they're just about empty. I have no idea why. Usually I top up anything under 3.9v, so I'm never really worried about cells getting low.

 

Do you think your 18650 figures would be similar to 26650 batteries?

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klrman wrote:

WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
You really have to do run-time tests on your battery to be sure. But, as a general rule, here is what I find I my 18650 batteries (various Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony): 4.20v 100% 4.10v 90% 4.00v 80% 3.90v 65% 3.75v 50% 3.60v 30% 3.30v 10% 2.90v 0% That’s a rough rule for remaining energy (in watt-hours, not amp-hours, since I use a regulated light with a boost driver to do comparisons). It seems pretty consistent for the popular 18650 cells (30Q’s, VTC6, GA), as well as some older cells. Protected cells and 14500 cells seem to have way higher voltages when they’re just about empty. I have no idea why. Usually I top up anything under 3.9v, so I’m never really worried about cells getting low.

 


Do you think your 18650 figures would be similar to 26650 batteries?

Imo yes, those are reasonable numbers for any 3.7v liion

I also find that my utorch drops out of medium @3.5v, so if that happens, i swap in fresh.

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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
You really have to do run-time tests on your battery to be sure.

But, as a general rule, here is what I find I my 18650 batteries (various Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony):

That’s a pretty good rule of thumb chart there. Protected batteries

4.20v 100%
4.10v 90%
4.00v 80%
3.90v 65%
3.75v 50%
3.60v 30%
3.30v 10%
2.90v 0%

That’s a rough rule for remaining energy (in watt-hours, not amp-hours, since I use a regulated light with a boost driver to do comparisons). It seems pretty consistent for the popular 18650 cells (30Q’s, VTC6, GA), as well as some older cells.

Protected cells and 14500 cells seem to have way higher voltages when they’re just about empty. I have no idea why.

Usually I top up anything under 3.9v, so I’m never really worried about cells getting low.

I’ve noticed with protected cells when they are empty show higher voltages then the same unprotected cell. I always chalked it up to the higher resistance from the protection circuit. Like a normal cell drained to 3 volts under load shows about 3.2 to 3.3 when placed on the charger. And some protected cells and worn out cells with higher internal resistance will go up to 3.5+ once the load is removed.

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jon_slider wrote:

imho 3.6v is half empty, and it is good for LiIon not to be deep cycled

For a cell like the PLB 26650 5000mAh (LiitoKala INR26650-50A), at 3.6V no-load less than 2Ah of capacity are left (to infer this just look at the 0.2A discharge curve and maybe add 25 - 30mV because of the very small additional (besides I × R) loaded cell voltage drop. Other cells (different chemistries and etc) may vary.

With regards to deep cycling being detrimental for li-ion… I've heard it many times, but found absolutely no proof of it, whereas high voltage (high state of charge) is known to be detrimental and there's plenty of experiential and experimental proof. Thus, as far as I am concerned I'm gonna give that a Big Bullsh1t Award

 

Cheers Party

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Remaining battery capacity depends on the voltage, the discharge curve of the cell voltage, the current draw at the moment of reading the voltage, and the average discharge rate.
Without these things all you will have is a rough guess.

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Barkuti wrote:

jon_slider wrote:
… it is good for LiIon not to be deep cycled


I’m gonna give that a Big Bullsh1t Award

Lol
You misunderstand, my point. I will try to clarify:

It is not bad to recharge liion at 50%.

It is not necessay to drain completely before recharging

Liion does not build recharge level memory

I agree liion can be stored half empty

If you want to disagree with something I said you should criticize the 3.6 V comment which is not accurate.
Or better yet just post your own opinion instead of taking the time to criticize mine

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These voltage to remaining capacity charts you see floating around, were mostly published and used when there were very few 18650 battery types and makes around. They were always considered a close estimate even then. Now you have several different types of 18650’s coming from each manufacture of the many, including a lot of china cells. The discharge curves vary a lot, so there measured resting voltage after partial use vary’s also, making the old voltage remaining capacity chart even further off. The chart is just a estimate and isn’t as reliable as it use to be because of so many differences in cells now a days. To make a somewhat accurate chart, you would need to discharge each type of cell and make a chart for that cell. Even then there could be slight differences. HKJ’s graphs would get you a close estimate under load, but you would have to use the same load as he tested with to get a close estimate. That reminds me, HKJ always tries to test two battery’s in his test because of the differences that sometimes causes different results when testing. These voltage to remaining capacity charts are just a estimate.

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jon_slider wrote:
klrman wrote:

WalkIntoTheLight wrote:
You really have to do run-time tests on your battery to be sure. But, as a general rule, here is what I find I my 18650 batteries (various Samsung, Sanyo, and Sony): 4.20v 100% 4.10v 90% 4.00v 80% 3.90v 65% 3.75v 50% 3.60v 30% 3.30v 10% 2.90v 0% That's a rough rule for remaining energy (in watt-hours, not amp-hours, since I use a regulated light with a boost driver to do comparisons). It seems pretty consistent for the popular 18650 cells (30Q's, VTC6, GA), as well as some older cells. Protected cells and 14500 cells seem to have way higher voltages when they're just about empty. I have no idea why. Usually I top up anything under 3.9v, so I'm never really worried about cells getting low.

 

Do you think your 18650 figures would be similar to 26650 batteries?

Imo yes, those are reasonable numbers for any 3.7v liion I also find that my utorch drops out of medium @3.5v, so if that happens, i swap in fresh.

 

So far, I've recharged the batteries when they reach around 3.6v to 3.7v but always wondered what would happen if I just let them regularly go down to 3.0V.  Never did that yet except when doing a capacity test on the charger.

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Some members did a voltage reading after letting cells sit for two months.
I did a voltage measurement with a small selection of cells at 50% capacity.

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Yes, that’s it. Thanks.
Jerry

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Don't take it too seriously jon_slider. I wasn't specifically criticizing you but that stray belief, I just added a cheap joke over the thing. Pretty sure it may be demonstrated that deep cycling li-ion could also be harmful but, how deep is deep? At the usual loaded cut-offs we often use, 3 to 2.75V, harm should be pretty small if anything. Shortly after removing a cell from one of my fully regulated torches (3V flashes) the cell rests at 3.3+V.

 

Cheers Smile

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At the current time all my 3 battery test stations are busy, but I hope to test some batteries for remaining capacity later this year.
I have not decided exactly what batteries to test, but I will be looking for some of the never types.

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

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Little question for HKJ and other technically Smile inclined fellows. As far as I understand, a typical consumer UPS (an old Riello iDialog Plus 60 whose Pb battery died) could be effectively overhauled with standard li-ion cells, 4S BMS and 4S LiFePO4 balance boards. Since it comes with a 6S Pb battery, the UPS should charge its battery to 14.4 - 14.6V, this means the 4S li-ion setup would get at least around 3.6 to 3.65V per cell. From what I can infer from HKJ's graphs, even with a 30A load a cell like the PLB 5000mAh would still deliver 1.5+Ah down to 2.5V, typical li-ion BMS cut-off voltage. Since we limit ourselves to around ⅓ of peak cell capacity, even for a continuous discharge cell temperature would never exceed any limits. Thus, a 4S2P INR26650-50A battery pack would for sure deliver an average of ≈2.8V at 30A, for 84W/cell and 3+ minutes of battery life at peak load. Even at cut-off, 10V × 60A = 600VA at the input. Target SAI load is a network connected terminal computer for ≈300VA at most, with no possibility of SAI communication and always on.

Makes sense? To me it does, and 8x/12x cells plus 2x 40A BMS and balance boards would cost little money. 

 

Cheers Smile

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Barkuti wrote:

Little question for HKJ and other technically Smile inclined fellows. As far as I understand, a typical consumer UPS (an old Riello iDialog Plus 60 whose Pb battery died) could be effectively overhauled with standard li-ion cells, 4S BMS and 4S LiFePO4 balance boards. Since it comes with a 6S Pb battery, the UPS should charge its battery to 14.4 – 14.6V, this means the 4S li-ion setup would get at least around 3.6 to 3.65V per cell. From what I can infer from HKJ’s graphs, even with a 30A load a cell like the PLB 5000mAh would still deliver 1.5+Ah down to 2.5V, typical li-ion BMS cut-off voltage. Since we limit ourselves to around ⅓ of peak cell capacity, even for a continuous discharge cell temperature would never exceed any limits. Thus, a 4S2P INR26650-50A battery pack would for sure deliver an average of ≈2.8V at 30A, for 84W/cell and 3+ minutes of battery life at peak load. Even at cut-off, 10V × 60A = 600VA at the input. Target SAI load is a network connected terminal computer for ≈300VA at most, with no possibility of SAI communication and always on.


Makes sense? To me it does, and 8x/12x cells plus 2× 40A BMS and balance boards would cost little money. 


 


Cheers Smile

It’s probably cheaper just to replace the SLA battery with another one.

I don’t know how much a specific battery for your UPS would be, but on some UPS devices, they can connect to an external battery for extra run-time. A 1000 Wh deep-cycle battery is about $100. You’d need to use the full capacity of a hundred 18650 cells to equal that, which would cost several times as much.

Bang-for-the-buck, lead-acid is still the way to go, as long as you don’t have to lug it around.

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WalkIntoTheLight wrote:

It's probably cheaper just to replace the SLA battery with another one.

Bang-for-the-buck, lead-acid is still the way to go, as long as you don't have to lug it around.

Problem is deep cycling. The battery is going to be deep cycled, period. No way around this because:
  • UPS communication is not possible.
  • Terminal is always on: after-work hours, weekends, etc.

The tiny stock lead acid batteries get damaged with just the first deep cycle, and 2 or 3 after this they're cadaver.

 

Cheers Party

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Barkuti wrote:

WalkIntoTheLight wrote:

It’s probably cheaper just to replace the SLA battery with another one.

Bang-for-the-buck, lead-acid is still the way to go, as long as you don’t have to lug it around.

Problem is deep cycling. The battery is going to be deep cycled, period. No way around this because:

  • UPS communication is not possible.

  • Terminal is always on: after-work hours, weekends, etc.


The tiny stock lead acid batteries get damaged with just the first deep cycle, and 2 or 3 after this they’re cadaver.


 


Cheers Party

The UPS should have a cut-off at some voltage, preventing the battery from being drained flat. Yes, it will be hard on a SLA battery to drain it low, but unless you’re doing that regularly, the deep-cycle batteries are built to handle that better than regular car batteries (or perhaps the crappy stock battery?).

Even if you ruin a deep-cycle SLA battery year or two, it’s still probably cheaper than a lithium-ion battery of the same capacity.

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What I see in our family business is an UPS will not last much beyond 4 - 5 years, and the solution has always been buying a new UPS, which already costs more than the custom li-ion setup which I'm sure would last at least twice and perform much better. In case of a blackout during rush hours it may allow you to dispatch a few customers and earn some additional penny. Of course in such a case one could close the system but with a long queue of wagerers to dispatch, seriously? Smile

 

Cheers Party

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Barkuti wrote:

Little question for HKJ and other technically Smile inclined fellows. As far as I understand, a typical consumer UPS (an old Riello iDialog Plus 60 whose Pb battery died) could be effectively overhauled with standard li-ion cells, 4S BMS and 4S LiFePO4 balance boards. Since it comes with a 6S Pb battery, the UPS should charge its battery to 14.4 – 14.6V, this means the 4S li-ion setup would get at least around 3.6 to 3.65V per cell. From what I can infer from HKJ’s graphs, even with a 30A load a cell like the PLB 5000mAh would still deliver 1.5+Ah down to 2.5V, typical li-ion BMS cut-off voltage. Since we limit ourselves to around ⅓ of peak cell capacity, even for a continuous discharge cell temperature would never exceed any limits. Thus, a 4S2P INR26650-50A battery pack would for sure deliver an average of ≈2.8V at 30A, for 84W/cell and 3+ minutes of battery life at peak load. Even at cut-off, 10V × 60A = 600VA at the input. Target SAI load is a network connected terminal computer for ≈300VA at most, with no possibility of SAI communication and always on.


Makes sense? To me it does, and 8x/12x cells plus 2× 40A BMS and balance boards would cost little money. 


 


Cheers Smile


There are in fact two issues, and you need to be aware of both of them. Lead Acid batteries have stable voltage under load. You cannot tell the charge state of a Lead Acid battery from its voltage. You actually have to measure the specific gravity of the acid in the cell to make that determination. That also means a UPS expects that if it has a 12 volt battery, it expects to see about 13.2 volts from startup until the battery is dead, by contrast Li-Ion cell charge state is determined by battery voltage, so as it discharges, the voltage will fall quite markedly from the original 4.2 or 4.35 volts per cell, and that is likely to be a problem for a device that expects to see constant voltage throughout the discharge cycle. In addition with lead acid cells, you can build them two ways. They can optimized for deep discharge cycling (this is how batteries to operate wheel chairs and electric trolling motors for boars are built), or optimized for overcharge tolerance (car batteries are designed this way). The life expectancy of any Li-Ion cell is close tied to how often and how deeply it is discharged. In addition the charging circuits are very different. Realistically because of the Li-Ion discharge properties, you need a UPS that is designed to deal with the changing input voltage as the cells discharge.
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mattheww1950 wrote:
Lead Acid batteries have stable voltage under load. You cannot tell the charge state of a Lead Acid battery from its voltage. You actually have to measure the specific gravity of the acid in the cell to make that determination. That also means a UPS expects that if it has a 12 volt battery, it expects to see about 13.2 volts from startup until the battery is dead,

You won’t get perfectly stable voltage from a lead-acid battery. While you might get 13.2 volts at full charge (given a low load), it will drop by up to 2 volts over the discharge. It’s not as dramatic as a lithium-ion battery, but it’s still a significant drop.

That said, you’re right that to get a proper reading you need to measure the specific gravity of the acid, which let’s face it: ain’t gonna happen in a UPS solution. UPS devices do give a capacity readout, though, which they must be estimating from the battery voltage.

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lead acid are far easier to determine remaining capacity by ocv than li-ion.
the wide range of li chemistries muddies this even further.
as for a ups if you have an old metal high quality unit the answer is a large external truck battery.
like a d31.
they are more of a high cycle type and being lead calcium dont need water as often as a lead antimony deep cycle.
since it will wear out from float life a few cycles are no big deal.