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Li-Ion battery dilemma.

Discussion in 'Power Electronics' started by eptheta, Sep 27, 2010.

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  1. eptheta


    Dec 20, 2009
    I have a camera that runs on 2, 1.5V alkaline batteries but i have to constantly replace those batteries and it annoys me.

    So, i have a mobile battery(Li-ion) that looks like this:

    I can regulate the output(about 4.6V i think) to the 3V needed by the camera easily, but its the charging that is the problem.

    To regulate the charging of this battery(not to over-charge it etc) looks too complex, but then again I didn't look at it properly, and am rather afraid to do so.
    So, should I:
    1. Build a charger myself (I'm not too inexperienced when it comes to building things, but I still need help)
    2. Buy a lithium ion battery charger from eBay (not really what I want)...
    3. Stop using a camera and start painting.

    Basically what I am asking is if it is difficult/expensive to build a Li-ion battery charger...

    Thank you.
  2. LTX71CM


    May 23, 2010
    Do you still own what the battery came from? I've made use of old cell phone batteries for robotics projects and just use the old phone to keep them charged.

    Li-Ion batteries can be finicky, if you build a charger from a schematic found online do yourself a favor and don't leave the house with it plugged in. Li-Ion powered "light displays" are scarily common. Luckily your battery (if it's the one pictured) is from a reputable company.
  3. eptheta


    Dec 20, 2009
    Well yes, I do have the phone with me, but I'd much rather charge it without a phone...
    Any ideas(that have worked in the past and don't offer a life risk when operational)?
  4. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    In theory, charging a Li-Ion battery is not difficult. You can simply charge them with a current limited constant voltage charger. It's important though not to leave them trickle charging forever.

    In many respects they are similar to lead-acid batteries.

    However, there is one important difference. If you get the voltage a couple of tenths of a volt too high on a lead acid battery it will break down the water and release H2 and O2. If you do the same to a Li-Ion battery you risk explosions or (at the very least) damage to the cell(s).

    This difference exhibits itself in the fact that flooded Lead Acid batteries are often overcharged slightly to equalise the cells. Li-Ion batteries are more likely to be slightly undercharged.
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