[OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

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[OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Jim Ruxton-2
I bought a cheap battery powered speaker/amp . It is only 3 watt but
works for my purpose. It's powered by a small 180 mAH LiPo battery. It
uses the simplest LiPo charging circuit I have seen. Basically it
charges from the 5 volts of a USB port through a 1 ohm resistor and
diode in series? I guess it stops charging when it gets to 5 volts -
forward voltage of the diode. The diode seems to have about .8 volts Vf
so charging stops at 4.2 volts which seems ok for LiPo. I guess I'm
wondering how the manufacturer gets away with such a simple charging
circuit? Is it only because the LiPo is such low capacity? Is this
standard for cheap low capacity LiPo charging? I want to change the
battery to a higher capacity battery but I am thinking if I do that I
should use a proper charging circuit or IC for the job. I can't just
stick a higher, say 1000 mAH battery in here can I? Doesn't seem safe.
Thanks for your thoughts on this.

Jim

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

James Cameron-2
I've seen one where the pack protection circuit, wrapped in polyimide
tape along with the battery, was used as the charge termination logic.

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

RussellMc
In reply to this post by Jim Ruxton-2
On Thu, 3 Sep 2020 at 17:16, Jim Ruxton <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I bought a cheap battery powered speaker/amp . It is only 3 watt but
> works for my purpose. It's powered by a small 180 mAH LiPo battery. It
> uses the simplest LiPo charging circuit I have seen. Basically it
> charges from the 5 volts of a USB port through a 1 ohm resistor and
> diode in series? I guess it stops charging when it gets to 5 volts -
> forward voltage of the diode. The diode seems to have about .8 volts Vf
> so charging stops at 4.2 volts which seems ok for LiPo.


That is a good way to destroy the battery early or very early or very very
early.

I'll add this here after writing the material below first :-).

An easy way to get a good result is to but a TP4056 module from
ebay/AliExpress/... .
These cost close enough to $0 to be hard to beat.
You can get ones with and without low battery cutoff. The with-cutoff
ones are a very good idea.
Distinguishable by some extra hardware and 4 output pads - Vout + - and
Battery + -
You get CCCV charging, CC rate settable and low battery discharge terminate.

They seem to have got even cheaper than when I last bought some.
This page has both types as above - plus it seems mini/micro/type C USB
power input connectors.
Example only - not a recommendation - but seems as good as most. YMMV.

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000061318186.html?

They also offer a version with a switchmode converter allowing a higher Vin
(typically up to about 18V rather than the 6V or so for TP4056)


________________________

Simple methods are used "because they can".
The cell MAY have an internal BMS to sort-of protect it.
MAy.
________________________

LiPo / LiIon should be charged by CC to Vmax with *immediate* terminate,
or, more usually, CCCV with CC to Vmax, and CV to some CC/N value. N=2 2 is
a good charge, n=4 is heavyish and N=10 is "road warrior".

CC only at mA = cell_mAh with immediate terminate at Vmax gives 89-90% of
max capacity and
CC at mA = mAh_cell/2 gives 90%+ of max capacity.
Immediate terminate at V=Vmax gives significant gain in cycle life and
whole of life mAh.

Lowering Vmax slightly gives significant increase in cycle life  and whole
of life mAh.

FWIW - nobody wants to do it - setting Vmax to about 3.85V (from memory)
allows Mars Rovers to get about 8000 cycles with LiIon. Capacity (from
memory) is about 50% of max.


Russell




> I guess I'm
> wondering how the manufacturer gets away with such a simple charging
> circuit? Is it only because the LiPo is such low capacity? Is this
> standard for cheap low capacity LiPo charging? I want to change the
> battery to a higher capacity battery but I am thinking if I do that I
> should use a proper charging circuit or IC for the job. I can't just
> stick a higher, say 1000 mAH battery in here can I? Doesn't seem safe.
> Thanks for your thoughts on this.
>
>
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Jim Ruxton-2
Thanks James and Russel for the posts. I hadn't considered that the
battery may have some integrated circuitry. There are no markings on the
battery so it's hard to know without dissecting it. I have ordered some
TP4056 modules so I'll give that a try when I replace the 180 mAH
nattery with a larger one. I greatly appreciate the advice.

Cheers,

Jim

>
> That is a good way to destroy the battery early or very early or very very
> early.
>
> I'll add this here after writing the material below first :-).
>
> An easy way to get a good result is to but a TP4056 module from
> ebay/AliExpress/... .
> These cost close enough to $0 to be hard to beat.
> You can get ones with and without low battery cutoff. The with-cutoff
> ones are a very good idea.
> Distinguishable by some extra hardware and 4 output pads - Vout + - and
> Battery + -
> You get CCCV charging, CC rate settable and low battery discharge terminate.
>
> They seem to have got even cheaper than when I last bought some.
> This page has both types as above - plus it seems mini/micro/type C USB
> power input connectors.
> Example only - not a recommendation - but seems as good as most. YMMV.
>
> https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000061318186.html?
>
> They also offer a version with a switchmode converter allowing a higher Vin
> (typically up to about 18V rather than the 6V or so for TP4056)
>
>
> ________________________
>
> Simple methods are used "because they can".
> The cell MAY have an internal BMS to sort-of protect it.
> MAy.
> ________________________
>
> LiPo / LiIon should be charged by CC to Vmax with *immediate* terminate,
> or, more usually, CCCV with CC to Vmax, and CV to some CC/N value. N=2 2 is
> a good charge, n=4 is heavyish and N=10 is "road warrior".
>
> CC only at mA = cell_mAh with immediate terminate at Vmax gives 89-90% of
> max capacity and
> CC at mA = mAh_cell/2 gives 90%+ of max capacity.
> Immediate terminate at V=Vmax gives significant gain in cycle life and
> whole of life mAh.
>
> Lowering Vmax slightly gives significant increase in cycle life  and whole
> of life mAh.
>
> FWIW - nobody wants to do it - setting Vmax to about 3.85V (from memory)
> allows Mars Rovers to get about 8000 cycles with LiIon. Capacity (from
> memory) is about 50% of max.
>
>
> Russell
>
>
>
>
>>
>>
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

James Cameron-2
No worries.

A careful constant current discharge curve should tell you if there is
a pack protection circuit.

Or show us a picture of the battery, terminal ends.

Pack protection circuits are always outside any metal-coloured polymer
envelope, ... in my experience.

I've a roughly 180 mAh cell here from a cheap product with pack
protection hidden under tape.

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Jim Ruxton-2
Thanks James,

Below photos show front and back of the battery. As you can see it is
hard to see any evidence of built in circuitry.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1P8dJ0InRqHxucISwHr60a313GkWGCae0/view

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mC-NPQWxzKda2GRVbrfEXOf_e5FTkDvL/view?usp=sharing




> No worries.
>
> A careful constant current discharge curve should tell you if there is
> a pack protection circuit.
>
> Or show us a picture of the battery, terminal ends.
>
> Pack protection circuits are always outside any metal-coloured polymer
> envelope, ... in my experience.
>
> I've a roughly 180 mAh cell here from a cheap product with pack
> protection hidden under tape.
>
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Ryan O'Connor
Is it just me or is that battery swollen to the point where it might
explode?

On Fri, 4 Sep 2020 at 17:48, Jim Ruxton <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Thanks James,
>
> Below photos show front and back of the battery. As you can see it is
> hard to see any evidence of built in circuitry.
>
> https://drive.google.com/file/d/1P8dJ0InRqHxucISwHr60a313GkWGCae0/view
>
>
> https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mC-NPQWxzKda2GRVbrfEXOf_e5FTkDvL/view?usp=sharing
>
>
>
>
> > No worries.
> >
> > A careful constant current discharge curve should tell you if there is
> > a pack protection circuit.
> >
> > Or show us a picture of the battery, terminal ends.
> >
> > Pack protection circuits are always outside any metal-coloured polymer
> > envelope, ... in my experience.
> >
> > I've a roughly 180 mAh cell here from a cheap product with pack
> > protection hidden under tape.
> >
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

James Cameron-2
In reply to this post by Jim Ruxton-2
Thanks.  I agree, no protection circuit, just the cell terminations.
Treat it with care.

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

James Cameron-2
In reply to this post by Ryan O'Connor
It's not just you; but I couldn't be sure from the angle of view and
not knowing angle of lighting.

On Fri, Sep 04, 2020 at 05:51:18PM +1200, Ryan O'Connor wrote:
> Is it just me or is that battery swollen to the point where it might
> explode?

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Jim Ruxton-2
It has been "puffy" since I got it. It isn't warm at all when charging
so I think it's ok. About to change it out anyway however.


> It's not just you; but I couldn't be sure from the angle of view and
> not knowing angle of lighting.
>
> On Fri, Sep 04, 2020 at 05:51:18PM +1200, Ryan O'Connor wrote:
>> Is it just me or is that battery swollen to the point where it might
>> explode?
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Clint Jay
Agree on theTP4056 boards, excellent value for money, I buy the TP4056/DW01
charge/battery protection boards in packs of ten these days as they're
really handy for throwing together a quick Li-Ion battery pack for portable
gear.

An example:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5PCS-5V-Micro-USB-Lithium-Battery-Charging-Board-Charger-Module-1A-18650

I've also found a variant which doesn't have the DW01 battery protection IC
but does have the TP4056 and a boost converter which can provide outputs up
to a claimed 12V/2A (I'm pretty sure it won't give 2A at 12V but it still
looks very useful)
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/USB-18650-Lithium-Li-ion-Battery-Charger-Module-Boost-3-7V-to-5V-9V-12V-New/



On Fri, 4 Sep 2020 at 07:24, Jim Ruxton <[hidden email]> wrote:

> It has been "puffy" since I got it. It isn't warm at all when charging
> so I think it's ok. About to change it out anyway however.
>
>
> > It's not just you; but I couldn't be sure from the angle of view and
> > not knowing angle of lighting.
> >
> > On Fri, Sep 04, 2020 at 05:51:18PM +1200, Ryan O'Connor wrote:
> >> Is it just me or is that battery swollen to the point where it might
> >> explode?
> --
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>


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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

RussellMc
You can combine the boost converter version to allow higher Vin plus the
battery low voltage protection circuit from the lower vin board. These can
be connected with 2 wires and a few tracks cut on the 4056 board. Circuits
of the 4056 PCBs are available.
The DW01 drives a low side back to back FET pair in a single pkg.
Easier to do than describe :-).

You could make a low voltage cutoff yourself but it would cost more than a
4056.


Russell



On Fri, 4 Sep 2020, 19:48 Clint Jay, <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Agree on theTP4056 boards, excellent value for money, I buy the TP4056/DW01
> charge/battery protection boards in packs of ten these days as they're
> really handy for throwing together a quick Li-Ion battery pack for portable
> gear.
>
> An example:
>
> https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/5PCS-5V-Micro-USB-Lithium-Battery-Charging-Board-Charger-Module-1A-18650
>
> I've also found a variant which doesn't have the DW01 battery protection IC
> but does have the TP4056 and a boost converter which can provide outputs up
> to a claimed 12V/2A (I'm pretty sure it won't give 2A at 12V but it still
> looks very useful)
>
> https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/USB-18650-Lithium-Li-ion-Battery-Charger-Module-Boost-3-7V-to-5V-9V-12V-New/
>
>
>
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Sean Breheny
In reply to this post by Jim Ruxton-2
I don't think I've ever seen a LiPo that is "puffy" which has not been
abused in some way. It may not get hot during normal use now but it has
almost certainly been hot in the past.

Sean


On Fri, Sep 4, 2020 at 2:24 AM Jim Ruxton <[hidden email]> wrote:

> It has been "puffy" since I got it. It isn't warm at all when charging
> so I think it's ok. About to change it out anyway however.
>
>
> > It's not just you; but I couldn't be sure from the angle of view and
> > not knowing angle of lighting.
> >
> > On Fri, Sep 04, 2020 at 05:51:18PM +1200, Ryan O'Connor wrote:
> >> Is it just me or is that battery swollen to the point where it might
> >> explode?
> --
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Bob Blick-5
In reply to this post by RussellMc
Hijacking the thread, I have a question about the battery in my mobile phone. I'm careful about charging, and want to get as many useful years of life as possible out of the battery. I try to never let the battery get too low, never charge the phone if it's hot, and never let it charge fully. Based on the phone's gauge, I charge it when it's down to 40% and take it off charge when it reaches 80 or 85%. I think this is probably a pretty good way of doing it. I plug the charger into a timer so I don't have to watch it, I'm not totally OCD :)

My question regards preferred charging current. The charger that came with the phone will do my normal charge regime in about 20 minutes. The good quality charger from a previous phone will take 90 minutes to do the same thing. Neither charger noticeably heats the phone.

Which is easier on the battery, high current for a short period of time, or medium current for a longer time, both taking the battery from 40% to 80% state of charge?

Thanks, Bob

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Sean Breheny
I think your charging regime is indeed a very good one for longevity for
typical Li ion chemistry. As far as charging current I don't think it
matters much as long as the current doesn't warm up the battery much. As
temperature increases, the "calendar life" wear on the battery is
accelerated exponentially (see Arrhenius equation for a mathematical
model). So, the less time you spend hot (whether it is charging,
discharging, or idle) the better.

There are two kinds of "life" - calendar and cycle. Calendar life is
shortened by higher temperature and by high state of charge (for typical Li
ion chemistry - this is not true of most battery chemistries). Cycle life
is shortened by large changes in state of charge and maximized for making
cycles smaller (less change in SOC). This effect is not simply linear. In
other words, if you add up the total coulombs of charge which pass through
a 1 amp-hour battery in its life, then typically you might find that it is
able to to 1000 1 amp-hour cycles but is able to do 15000 0.1 AH cycles
(i.e., 50% better cycle life in terms of amp-hours).

Sean


On Sun, Sep 6, 2020 at 1:34 PM Bob Blick <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hijacking the thread, I have a question about the battery in my mobile
> phone. I'm careful about charging, and want to get as many useful years of
> life as possible out of the battery. I try to never let the battery get too
> low, never charge the phone if it's hot, and never let it charge fully.
> Based on the phone's gauge, I charge it when it's down to 40% and take it
> off charge when it reaches 80 or 85%. I think this is probably a pretty
> good way of doing it. I plug the charger into a timer so I don't have to
> watch it, I'm not totally OCD :)
>
> My question regards preferred charging current. The charger that came with
> the phone will do my normal charge regime in about 20 minutes. The good
> quality charger from a previous phone will take 90 minutes to do the same
> thing. Neither charger noticeably heats the phone.
>
> Which is easier on the battery, high current for a short period of time,
> or medium current for a longer time, both taking the battery from 40% to
> 80% state of charge?
>
> Thanks, Bob
>
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Ryan O'Connor
In reply to this post by Bob Blick-5
Bob, does your phone have a feature marketed as "fast charge"? As it may be
set to that mode (in software), in which case it could be negatively
impacting your battery life. It requires a fairly beefy charger of at least
~3000mAh.

Ryan

On Mon, 7 Sep 2020 at 05:34, Bob Blick <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hijacking the thread, I have a question about the battery in my mobile
> phone. I'm careful about charging, and want to get as many useful years of
> life as possible out of the battery. I try to never let the battery get too
> low, never charge the phone if it's hot, and never let it charge fully.
> Based on the phone's gauge, I charge it when it's down to 40% and take it
> off charge when it reaches 80 or 85%. I think this is probably a pretty
> good way of doing it. I plug the charger into a timer so I don't have to
> watch it, I'm not totally OCD :)
>
> My question regards preferred charging current. The charger that came with
> the phone will do my normal charge regime in about 20 minutes. The good
> quality charger from a previous phone will take 90 minutes to do the same
> thing. Neither charger noticeably heats the phone.
>
> Which is easier on the battery, high current for a short period of time,
> or medium current for a longer time, both taking the battery from 40% to
> 80% state of charge?
>
> Thanks, Bob
>
> --
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Bob Blick-5
Hi Ryan,

It's a Pixel 3A. The charger that came with it is USB-C and says 5V3A/9V2A. There is nothing in settings to alter the charge rate. It definitely is a fast charging phone. My previous phone, a Nexus-something, also had a high voltage charger, but they are incompatible and default to slow charging with the wrong charger.

The battery is supposed to be 3000mAh.

Best regards, Bob

________________________________________
From: [hidden email] <[hidden email]> on behalf of Ryan O'Connor
Sent: Sunday, September 6, 2020 1:54 PM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Bob, does your phone have a feature marketed as "fast charge"? As it may be
set to that mode (in software), in which case it could be negatively
impacting your battery life. It requires a fairly beefy charger of at least
~3000mAh.

Ryan

On Mon, 7 Sep 2020 at 05:34, Bob Blick  wrote:

> Hijacking the thread, I have a question about the battery in my mobile
> phone. I'm careful about charging, and want to get as many useful years of
> life as possible out of the battery. I try to never let the battery get too
> low, never charge the phone if it's hot, and never let it charge fully.
> Based on the phone's gauge, I charge it when it's down to 40% and take it
> off charge when it reaches 80 or 85%. I think this is probably a pretty
> good way of doing it. I plug the charger into a timer so I don't have to
> watch it, I'm not totally OCD :)
>
> My question regards preferred charging current. The charger that came with
> the phone will do my normal charge regime in about 20 minutes. The good
> quality charger from a previous phone will take 90 minutes to do the same
> thing. Neither charger noticeably heats the phone.
>
> Which is easier on the battery, high current for a short period of time,
> or medium current for a longer time, both taking the battery from 40% to
> 80% state of charge?
>
> Thanks, Bob
>

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

James Cameron-2
Not on this particular product, but I've been able to reduce fast
charge to slow charge by lowering the voltage.  Simplest by adding a
USB extension cable in series.

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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Ryan O'Connor
Sounds like smart phones are too smart now. I guess your old charger is
reverting it back to the regular charging rate. From what I've read using a
regular charge instead of fast charge does prolong the battery life but not
by much. Usually a battery replacement isn't an expensive task anyway, it's
going to wear out eventually regardless.

On Mon, 7 Sep 2020 at 09:41, James Cameron <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Not on this particular product, but I've been able to reduce fast
> charge to slow charge by lowering the voltage.  Simplest by adding a
> USB extension cable in series.
>
> --
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> http://quozl.netrek.org/
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Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Bob Blick-5
Hi Ryan,
I think user behavior is the primary reason for short battery life. A friend of mine bought the same phone as my wife, yet his battery got pretty tired after two years, while hers was still strong when I got her a new phone after four years use. Her battery care regime is pretty much to charge fully when it got below 50%. And she always propped the phone on a pen or pencil so it had airflow while charging(that was something I showed her). My friend, on the other hand, was very haphazard when it came to caring for his battery.
Friendly regards, Bob

________________________________________
From: [hidden email] <[hidden email]> on behalf of Ryan O'Connor
Sent: Sunday, September 6, 2020 3:10 PM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [OT] Simple LiPo charging circuit

Sounds like smart phones are too smart now. I guess your old charger is
reverting it back to the regular charging rate. From what I've read using a
regular charge instead of fast charge does prolong the battery life but not
by much. Usually a battery replacement isn't an expensive task anyway, it's
going to wear out eventually regardless.

On Mon, 7 Sep 2020 at 09:41, James Cameron wrote:

> Not on this particular product, but I've been able to reduce fast
> charge to slow charge by lowering the voltage.  Simplest by adding a
> USB extension cable in series.
>
> --
> James Cameron
> http://quozl.netrek.org/
> -
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