By Nick Flaherty www.flaherty.co.uk
New regulations on the shipment of lithium ion batteries by air that came into effect in April are causing headaches for battery makers and customers alike.
The changes came about after several fires on aircraft carrying lithium ion battery packs. Now the charge levels are restricted and the consignments can only be carried in cargo, not passenger planes.
This has also led the US Rechargeable Battery Association (PRBA) to call for tougher enforcement of the transport regulations for battery makers in China. "Unfortunately, we are seeing an enforcement gap in China by agencies overseeing the transport of lithium ion batteries," said George Kerchner, executive director of the PRBA.
The details, with an update on 11/6, are at http://www.power-eetimes.com/news/battery-makers-and-customers-face-transport-challenges, and battery makes such as VARTA Storage are having to add new part numbers to reflect the different levels of charge in the cell. A new design library from VARTA includes all the documentation, certification and 3D models for the batteries to help designers add battery packs quickly and easily.