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BioEnno current rating - changed or mislabeled?

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Jed Baer
(@kd0ymg)
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I recently purchased a BioEnno BLF-1206A battery from Ham Radio Outlet. The specific purpose is to go into a 10A battery box I'm building.

The advertised specs for this battery, at HRO, BioEnno, Powerwerx, etc., are for 12A continuous discharge current, 24A peak (2 sec).

The label on the battery I purchased states only 6A continuous current output.

Fortunately, HRO refunded my money. I have inquiries at both BioEnno and PowerWerx regarding this battery.

Does anyone have any specific information as to what's happening? Has BioEnno recently downgraded the ratings on batteries, but not updated their published specifications? Have they recently changed something, such as the BMS? Is the 6A battery old stock, new stock?

If I hear anything, I'll post it here. In the mean time, if anyone else has further information, I'd like to know.

Here's the label from the battery I purchased:

 


   
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ECStein
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Nope...that's how a 6Ampere Hour Battery is rated.  Why would you consider building a 10A battery box using less than the one hour rating?  Generally as a minimum the AH rating would be the minimum battery sizing parameter.  If you intend to operate longer than one hour you would use use a battery AH rating larger than the continuous AH rating. 

Battery AH rating is a total power rating for one hour.  Different discharge rates yield different time curves.

If you were building a 10A battery box for 10 minutes the 6AH battery might have been OK.  You would have to look at the 10 minute discharge curve.  As a minimum I would recommend a 10AH rating as minimum for a 10A battery box....and realize it's only good for one hour at that rating.

There are many descriptions of how to size a battery on the website.

12A was not a continuous rating for this battery....it was the maximum discharge rate....

This post was modified 1 year ago by ECStein

   
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Jed Baer
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I kinda get your point, but I'm not trying to build a box for 10A continuous for an hour. I do want that headroom just in case, but not as a full-time load. It's going to be solar-backed anyway, so most of the time, the battery will be sort of like a super capacitor anyway, or a buffer, if you prefer to think of it that way.

The fact remains that BioEnno rates that battery, on their website, and in the specification sheet, for 12A output continuous, 24A peak for 2 seconds. If BioEnno is publishing bad specs, and mis-labeling their batteries, that's something I want to know about.

If you look at the picture of the battery at BioEnno's website, you'll see the label showing the 12/24A spec. That's what I thought I was purchasing, and it wasn't until I got it home that I realized the situation. BioEnno 6AH battery - where you'll see "12A Max Continuous Discharge Current".


   
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ECStein
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I see your point.  I think what is the problem here is what is meant by "continuous".  At 24 A continuous is for 2 seconds!

The 6A rating is for 1 hour.  It does not state how long the 12A rating is good for.  I can assure you it will be greater than 2 sec but less than 1 hour!  It is not a linear relationship.  They should have a family of discharge curves for various continuous ampacaities.  The 10A discharge time may be long enough for your purpose.  Bienno should be able to provide the curves for you.

In sizing batteries for an emergency they usually concoct a load vs time plot in order to provide DC power over the full duration of the emergency....which usually implies until safe shutdown is achieved.  The continuous ampere rating usually does not mean much compared to the total energy required over the emergency duration.  This can very from application to application.  


   
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Jed Baer
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Actually, the main problem is the spec vs. the label - 6A being half of 12A. That's a significant difference. It goes to the question of knowing what to expect from the manufacturer and the product. Whether BioEnno is better than, e.g., Miady or the myriad other companies, well that's a big digression. AH is important, but so also is availability of current at a given time, even if it isn't typical load, but neither is it only 2 seconds.

However, I appreciate your reminder regarding the non-linearity. I actually knew that, but had forgotten about it. It's quite a divergence from the purpose of this thread, but I'll note that mentions of that relationship haven't come up in the many many articles, videos, and presentations I've read and watched, regarding portable and solar for ham radio. It was in the context of vaping, and maybe flashlights, where I first encountered a mention of it. I should've refreshed myself using the excellent Battery University before proceeding, but I was (and still am) feeling over-saturated with "data", much of which seems not so useful.


   
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ECStein
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Actually....between the two Ampere ratings (6AH and 12A) one is actually a Watt Hour rating while the other is just a Watt rating.  I can see the need for knowing both....as they are not the same thing.  Both should be considered in a battery box design.


   
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Jed Baer
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Nope. In both cases, I've cited the amperage. It's the same battery, same part number, same 6AH.


   
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ECStein
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I see the difference between the specs....but remember that AH and A are two different things.  It will be interesting to see how Bienno responds to the difference in stated Continuous A.  I suspect the continuous A for a 6AH battery will be greater than 6A.


   
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ECStein
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Perhaps Bienno has experienced shorter battery life at higher than the hourly discharge ampacity?  I know they warn users that this is not a typical Lead Acid battery that can handle large (car starting) loads.  I also know that they warn against using measured voltage on LiFePo batteries as an indicator of remaining charge,  Discharging a battery below acceptable Voltage levels is bad news regardless of the battery technology employed.

I'm looking forward to what you hear from Bienno.


   
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Jed Baer
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I suspect what I hear from BioEnno, if anything, will match what's on the FAQ Page.

The de-rating on the label to 1C is mentioned to ensure the battery can deliver more than 2,000 to 3,000 cycles.

Which is fine, except for the question coming up only after the purchaser has received the product and noticed the difference. A very tiny amount of thoughtfulness in documentation would save irritation.


   
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ECStein
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I am confused now?  You said your Bioenno Battery had a 6A max rating.  But the label you attached stated a 12A max rating?  Where did the 6A max rating come from?  

The battery capacity of 72Watthours applies to the 6AH rating.  Discharging at a higher than the AH rating has always limited battery capacity and battery life.  That's why those Tesla Drivers racing their EVs are using much more than watt-hours....they are eating into battery life (# of recharges).

I think the rule of thumb I presented in my first response was accurate.  If you wish to build a 10A battery box....start with a 10AH battery!

Nameplate standards are nameplate standards.  I recall how surprised I was as a young engineer at Standby Diesel Generator nameplates (KVA at .8PF).  I mistakingly assumed more power was available at unity PF.  It took a mechanical engineer to explain to me that the motive driver was sized for KVA at a design PF.  So the power rating was limited to exactly what the nameplate said....KVA at .8PF!

 

 

This post was modified 1 year ago by ECStein

   
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Jed Baer
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You're over-thinking it. The 6A continuous rating is from the label on the battery. It does not agree with the 12A continuous rating on the spec sheet. That's really all there is here, other than the extent to which it temporarily confounded my process. I have no difficulty differentiating between amp-hours and amps. Thanks to you, I also now remember the situation with discharge curves. Their 6AH battery will, in fact, supply 10A, however, there's a trade-off there, and I don't know what their BMS will do. That's it.


   
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ECStein
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@kd0ymg  

I've been accused of overthinking before!  LOL


   
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Jed Baer
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Both BioEnno and PowerWerx responded to my e-mails. PowerWerx noted that, "Bioenno has been known to change product ratings without notification to their dealers", and referred me to the BioEnno FAQ. BioEnno also referred me to the FAQ, but pasted the relevant content in the e-mail.

Unless my memory or reading comprehension has gotten really bad, it looks as if BioEnno has added better information to the relevant FAQ, which I recall as being a bit more generic. They now provide, on their FAQ page, at the bottom, a list of discharge values allowed by the BMS. The de-rating on the label is, indeed, something they did to ensure a longer battery life, and apparently, doesn't reflect the specifications for the BMS circuit. Why they don't provide these specifics on the product pages for their batteries, I won't try to guess.

Just my opinion, but I think this a poor way to do business. But the I'm the sort who doesn't like surprises when shelling out money. 😜 


   
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ECStein
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The murky world of rating batteries has been a problem ever since we almost lost the USS Nautilus submarine under the Polar Ice Cap.  After shutting down for tests they almost did not have enough left in their battery to pull rods on the reactor for a restart!  Determining how much energy is available in a battery is a function of its discharge rate history, number of recharges, and method method of recharge.  All these details are difficult to list in a nameplate or abbreviated spec sheet.  This is true of all battery manufacturers.

So...the only things to hang your hat on are the voltage rating and AH rating of a battery.  Very little has changed rating wise even though battery technology has changed greatly.  And discharge rates, battery life, and other specifications can be changed by a simple little modification in the manufacturing process.  The only things that have remained constant are the voltage rating and AH rating.  These things are easily tested.

That's why it was always important to deal with manufacturer technical departments when designing a battery system if you wish to depart from standard nameplate ratings and rely on various estimated discharge rates.....be careful.  That has always been the case with batteries.  They are a chemical phenomenon.  EV car manufacturers are finding this out with their estimated milages for EVs.

I was not overthinking when I suggested you use a 10AH battery for a 10A battery box!

 

 

This post was modified 1 year ago by ECStein

   
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