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UN38.3 Certification for Lithium Ion Polymer Battery

About Lipo Battery UN38.3 Transportation Testing

What is the UN38.3? What should be done for UN38.3 certification?
In order to ensure the safety of air or sea transportation and meet customers’ demand for the transportation of goods containing lithium batteries, the operation specification namely UN38.3 testing (UN/DOT) was formulated by IATA about rechargeable lithium battery.

UN38.3 certification need to process eight tests.
Before air or sea transportation, the lithium battery is required to pass the altitude simulation, thermal test, vibration test, shock test, 55℃ external short circuit, impact/crush test, overcharge test, forced discharge test, in order to ensure the safety of lithium battery or products containing lithium batteries transportation.

 

38.3.4.1  Test1: Altitude simulation

Test cells and batteries shall be stored at a pressure of 11.6 kPa or less for at least six hours at ambient temperature (20±5℃).
(Cells and batteries meet this requirement if there is no mass loss, no leakage, no venting, no disassembly, no rupture and no fire and if the open circuit voltage of each test cell or battery after testing is not less than 90% of its voltage immediately prior to this procedure. The requirement relating to voltage is not applicable to test cells and batteries at fully discharged states.)

38.3.4.2  Test2: Thermal test

Test cells and batteries are to be stored for at least six hours at a test temperature equal to 72±2℃, followed by storage for at least six hours at a test temperature equal to -40±2℃. The maximum time interval between test temperature extremes is 30 minutes. This procedure is to be repeated 10 times, after which all test cells and batteries are to be stored for 24 hours at ambient temperature (20±5℃).
For large cells and batteries the duration of exposure to the test temperature extremes should be at least 12 hours.
(Cells and batteries meet this requirement if there is no mass loss, no leakage, no venting, no disassembly, no rupture and no fire and if the open circuit voltage of each test cell or battery after testing is not less than 90% of its voltage immediately prior to this procedure. The requirement relating to voltage is not applicable to test cells and batteries at fully discharged states.)

38.3.4.3  Test3: Vibration

Cells and batteries are firmly secured to the platform of the vibration machine without distorting the cells in such a manner as to faithfully transmit the vibration. The vibration shall be a sinusoidal waveform with a logarithmic sweep between 7 Hz and 200 Hz and back to 7 Hz traversed in 15 minutes. This cycle shall be repeated 12 times for a total of 3 hours for each of three mutually perpendicular to the terminal face.
The logarithmic frequency sweep shall differ for cells and batteries with a gross mass of not more than 12 kg (cells and small batteries), and for batteries with a gross mass of more than 12 kg (large batteries).
For cells and small batteries: from 7 Hz a peak acceleration of 1 gn is maintained until 18 Hz is reached. The amplitude is then maintained at 0.8 mm (1.6 mm total excursion) and the frequency increased until a peak acceleration of 8 gn occurs (approximately 50 Hz). A peak acceleration of 8 gn is then maintained until the frequency is increased to 200 Hz.
For large batteries: from 7 Hz to a peak acceleration of 1 gn is maintained until 18 Hz is reached. The amplitude is then maintained at 0.8 mm (1.6 mm total excursion) and the frequency increased until a peak acceleration of 2 gn occurs (approximately 25 Hz). A peak acceleration of 2 gn is then maintained until the frequency is increased to 200 Hz.
(Cells and batteries meet this requirement if there is no mass loss, no leakage, no venting, no disassembly, no rupture and no fire and if the open circuit voltage of each test cell or battery after testing is not less than 90% of its voltage immediately prior to this procedure. The requirement relating to voltage is not applicable to test cells and batteries at fully discharged states.)

38.3.4.4  Test4: Shock

Test cells and batteries shall be secured to the testing machine by means of a rigid mount which will support all mounting surfaces of each test battery.
Each cell shall be subjected to a half-sine shock of peak acceleration of 150 gn and pulse duration of 6 milliseconds. Alternatively, large cells may be subjected to a half-sine shock of peak acceleration of 50 gn and pulse duration of 11 milliseconds.
Each battery shall be subjected to a half-sine shock of peak acceleration depending on the mass of the battery. The pulse duration shall be 6 milliseconds for small batteries and 11 milliseconds for large batteries. The formulas below are provided to calculate the appropriate minimum peak acceleration.
(Cells and batteries meet this requirement if there is no mass loss, no leakage, no venting, no disassembly, no rupture and no fire and if the open circuit voltage of each test cell or battery after testing is not less than 90% of its voltage immediately prior to this procedure. The requirement relating to voltage is not applicable to test cells and batteries at fully discharged states.)

38.3.4.5  Test5: External short circuit

The cell or battery to be tested shall be temperature stabilized so that its external case temperature reaches 57±4℃ and then the cell or battery shall be subjected to a short circuit condition with a total external resistance of less than 0.1 ohm at 57±4℃). This short circuit condition is continued for at least one hour after the cell or battery external case temperature has returned to 57±4℃).
(Cells and batteries meet this requirement if their external temperature does not exceed 170 ℃ and there is no disassembly, no rupture and no fire during the test and within six hours after the test.)

38.3.4.6  Test6: Impact/ Crush

Test procedure-impact (applicable to cylindrical cells greater than or equal to 18 mm in diameter).
The sample cell or component cell is to be placed on a flat smooth surface. A 15.8 mm±0.1mm diameter, at least 6 cm long, or the longest dimension of the cell, whichever us is greater, type316 stainless steel bar is to be placed across the centre of the sample. A 9.1 kg±0.1 kg mass is to be dropped from a height of 61±2.5 cm at the intersection of the bar and sample in a controlled manner using a near frictionless, vertical, sliding track or channel with minimal drag on the falling mass. The vertical track or channel used to guide the falling mass shall be oriented 90 degrees from the horizontal supporting surface.
The test sample is to be impacted with its longitudinal axis parallel to the flat surface and perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the 15.8 mm±0.1mm diamerter curved surface lying across the centre of the test sample. Each sample is to be subjected to only a single impact.
Test procedure – Crush (application to prismatic, pouch, coin/button cells and cylindrical cells not more than 18 mm in diameter).
A cell or component cell is to be crushed between two flat surfaces. The crushing is to be gradual with a speed of approximately 1.5 cm/s at the first point of contact. The crushing is to be continued until the first of the three options below is reached.
(a)The applied force reaches 13kN±0.78kN;
(b)The voltage of the cell drops by at least 100 mV;
(c)The cell is deformed by 50% or more of its original thickness.
A prismatic or pouch cell shall be crushed by applying the force to the widest side. A button/coin cell shall be crushed by applying the force on its flat surfaces. For cylindrical cells, the crush force shall be applied perpendicular to the longitudinal axis.
Each test cell or component cell is to be subjected to one crush only. The test sample shall be observed for a further 6 h. The test shall be conducted using test cells or component cells that have not previously been subjected to other tests.
(Cells and component cells meet this requirement if their external temperature does not exceed 170 and there is no disassembly and no fire during the test and within six hours after this test.)

38.3.4.7  Test7: Overcharge

The charge current shall be twice the manufacturer’s recommended maximum continuous charge current. Tests are to be conducted at ambient temperature. The duration of the test shall be 24 hours. The minimum voltage of the test shall be as follows:
(a)When the manufacturer’s recommended charge voltage is not more than 18V, the minimum voltage of the test shall be the lesser of two times the maximum charge voltage of the battery or 22V.
(b)When the manufacturer’s recommended charge voltage is more than 18V, the minimum voltage of the test shall be 1.2 times the maximum charge voltage.
There is no disassembly and no fire during the test and within seven days after the test.

38.3.4.8  Test8: Forced discharge

Each cell shall be forced discharged at ambient temperature by connecting it in series with a 12V D.C. power supply at an initial current equal to the maximum discharge current specified by the manufacturer.
The specified discharge current is to be obtained by connecting a resistive load of the appropriate size and rating in series with the test cell. Each cell shall be forced discharged for a time interval (in hours) equal to its rated capacity divided by the initial test current (in ampere).
There is no disassembly and no fire during the test and within seven days after the test.

 

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