Nickle iron batteries

Has anyone used nickle iron batteries, also known as the Edison battery. They are supposed to last forever and can be regularly discharged to 100% DOD with no ill effects.

Comments

  • audredgeraudredger Solar Expert Posts: 272 ✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    Don't know if they are made anymore .. unless China?
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,114 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    aslo referred to as Ni-Fe batteries if you are trying a search.
    The British company NIFE was bought out by the French SAFT co.
    SAFT makes wet NiCd batteries that use a lye electrolyte, also very durable...
    their products are mainly used in Hi tech applications, military and space.

    HTH
    Eric
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • bluetickbluetick Registered Users Posts: 19
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    I did a quick search, a 48 volt 1000ah bank will set you back 40,000 dollars for the china made batteries. They project a 20 year life at 50% dod. Only one import agent in the USA.
  • WindsunWindsun Solar Expert Posts: 1,164 ✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    The main reason they fell out of favor is because of their innefiencies. They eat up a substantial portion of the power just in charging and discharging - as much as 40%.
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,011 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    7 Month update.

    This last week, was refill time. Becasue of the need to exclude Co2 from the cells, the vent & fill hole, has a little check valve in it, and it was a real pain to bypass it and refill. Cells were not quite yet down to the FILL---- indicator line, but each took about 1/2 gallon of distilled, to top them off. Bank seemed fine, but not under any heavy load yet. I've set the absorb time back again, to reduce gassing, we'll see how it goes.

    Their size is roughly a bit larger than L-16's

    House permit is imminent, and in 6 months, I hope to be living off the batteries at night.


    battery lugs http://tinyurl.com/LMR-BigLug
    Setting up batteries http://tinyurl.com/LMR-NiFe
    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • offgridmanoffgridman Registered Users Posts: 2
    Re: Nickle iron batteries
    bluetick wrote: »
    I did a quick search, a 48 volt 1000ah bank will set you back 40,000 dollars for the china made batteries. They project a 20 year life at 50% dod. Only one import agent in the USA.

    I just downloaded the price list from BeUtilityFree web site http://www.beutilityfree.com/pdf_files/NiFeFlyer.pdf and their list price on a 48V, 1000 AH (C/5 rate is $40,320.00 But what you failed to disclose was the 15% discount that you get from them when you buy a cells LARGER than 600 Ah. One thing I really hate which causes so many problems is people not being totally truthful. With a 15% discount it would bring the price down to $34,272.00. Quite a price difference. And a 1000 Ah, 48 V battery bank is certainly not a "normal" off grid battery size. YEs there is a price premium on nickel iron batteries but not much when you compare prices to industrial lead acid batteries.
  • BillBlakeBillBlake Solar Expert Posts: 49
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    Changhong Drops the Dime on Chinese Nickel Iron (Ni-Fe) Batteries.

    'Changhong NF-S Series Nickel-Iron batteries

    for solar PV application.'

    From Oct. 2010


    1.6.7 Cycling

    The Changhong NF-S series NiFe

    cell is adaptable to a wide range

    of depth of discharge (DOD). The

    number of cycles vary with DOD

    required. The lower DOD is, the

    more number of cycles are. The

    number of cycles reach thousands

    during shallow discharge, while it

    can only reach hundreds of cycles

    during deep discharge. The

    following figure gives the effect of

    DOD on the available cycle life.

    NOTE: Changhong closed their website down for a while and when they came back
    there were 2 versions of the Ni-Fe Solar Brochure if you poke around.

    http://www.changhongbatteries.com/

    Under Nickle-Iron (Ni-Fe)

    it's called "Solar Ni-Fe cell catalogue"

    Under Ni-Fe Battery for Solar & wind appliances

    they are calling it

    "Solar PV Ni-Fe cell catalogue"

    IF you have an interest make a copy NOW. Funny things can happen with Changhong Literature.

    (Back to the post.)


    NOTE: With once Daily Cycling (See Chart)

    __________________________________________


    100% DOD = Well Under 3 Years

    80% DOD = Around 3.3 Years

    50% DOD = Around 8.6 Years

    30% DOD = Around 16.8 Years

    20% DOD = Around 23 Years


    'Jan. 2008 Changhong NiFe Operators Manual'

    1.4

    Life time: The charge and discharge cycles should

    be more than 750 times. During the life time, the

    average discharge capacity should not be less

    than nominal capacity. The minimum discharge

    capacity should be more than 90% of the nominal

    capacity.


    NOTE: < snip >

    "More than 750 Times"

    This is the only Cycles Claim in this Operators Manual.

    However note the HIGH Capacity Claim with the NEW jacked up
    LiOH.H20 Levels. UP by 400% now.

    This seems to be the first time in Internet History that this Important Data has
    ever been pointed out.

    There are plenty of Great Things about the NiFe cells that need
    to be looked at properly and appreciated.

    Absolutely no need for lies, half truths, myths or fish wives tales.


    'Changhong Operators Manual'

    NOTE: Prior to Jan. 2008

    with 75% Lower LiOH.H2O Levels at typical USA Temperatures
    than after the
    Jan. 2008 Operators Manual above.


    4.8 Lifetime

    Life time: The number of full charge and full discharge cycles will

    be about 1000 times depending on proper maintenance

    > > > > including electrolyte replacement when needed. < < < <

    Much longer lifespans can be expected if regular discharges are

    less than 20%

    where the number of charge / discharge cycles will be between

    > > > > 5000 to 8000 cycles. < < < <

    The end of the lifespan is defined by operation at 70% capacity
    or lower

    > > > > after replacing the electrolyte. < < < <

    In many applications the battery will still be very useful for
    many years or decades beyond this.



    NOTE: "In many applications" can mean many things including

    Capacity of Less than 70% being acceptable.


    Here are the two Changhong Dealers (retail with huge mark-ups) in America.

    20% TOTAL Nickel Content Ni-Fe Batteries. (Not a Dime more, he, he, he.) :-)

    'John D'Angelo and Brandon Williams'

    Google goes way behind the scenes with these enterprising, colorful, claim makers.

    https://www.google.com/#hl=en&sclient=psy-ab&q=John+D%27Angelo+and+Brandon+Williams&oq=John+D%27angelo&aq=1p&aqi=p-p2g2&aql=&gs_l=hp.1.1.35i39l2j0l2.0.0.1.2708.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0..0.0...0.0.gwBj-s8LCOU&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=d3c0e5c7100382f1&biw=1280&bih=643


    Bill Blake
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries

    huh? why is 15% off of 40 grand such a bargain for a 1000ah 48v bank?:confused:
  • solar_davesolar_dave Solar Expert Posts: 2,335 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries
    niel wrote: »
    huh? why is 15% off of 40 grand such a bargain for a 1000ah 48v bank?:confused:

    A pair of crown industrial 1000AH 24V can be had from our sponsor for under $10,000.
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,011 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries
    solar_dave wrote: »
    A pair of crown industrial 1000AH 24V can be had from our sponsor for under $10,000.

    and you need 2 of them, for 48V.

    so $20K for lead acid, or $34.3K for sexy Ni-Fe ?? The $15K difference could buy 3/4 a replacement bank of lead acid
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • BillBlakeBillBlake Solar Expert Posts: 49
    Re: Nickle iron batteries
    mike90045 wrote: »
    and you need 2 of them, for 48V.

    so $20K for lead acid, or $34.3K for sexy Ni-Fe ?? The $15K difference could buy 3/4 a replacement bank of lead acid

    Mike, It looks like under 10 grand for 1,000 Ah, 48 Volts at the Legendary Wind-Sun.com

    The NF800-S Ni-Fe cells that I've been looking into NOW take in the low Thousands of Dollar$ to replace the Electrolyte - each time $

    So you really need to narrow down how many go-go juice (electrolyte) changes (Over Time) to do a proper cost comparison - over time.

    Also to compare 'Battery Capacity Over Time' which I suspect the Ni-Fe cells excel at. For goodness sakes they need to win at something :-)

    The only way to REALLY find out for sure is to wear out two sets of batteries under identical loads and circumstances. Then measure what happens.

    If I win the Mega Millions (or whatever) that battery test feat goes on my To Do List right away.

    The Russian's wrote back to me and said they want to get into the USA Battery market real, real bad with their Ni-Fe batteries.

    Asked them if they are willing to wear some stuff out doing ACTUAL no jive head to head battery comparisons (like it's a real business).

    Gave John D'Angelo all the Russian contact info a couple of days ago. It's a love/ hate research relationship. What can I say ;-)

    Of coarse you have to also Drop a nice Dime on somebody once in a while :-)

    'CROWN BATTERIES'

    http://www.solar-electric.com/24voinba.html


    Bill Blake
  • solar_davesolar_dave Solar Expert Posts: 2,335 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Nickle iron batteries
    mike90045 wrote: »
    and you need 2 of them, for 48V.

    so $20K for lead acid, or $34.3K for sexy Ni-Fe ?? The $15K difference could buy 3/4 a replacement bank of lead acid

    No that is a pair for $10K
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,011 ✭✭✭✭
    Update on my bank  (800ah 48V NiFe)  Aug 2018
    Spent a week doing a electrolyte refresh, switched to a sacrificial bank of 4 marine batteries and ran a honda eu2000 nighttime to keep it in float.
    //////
    7/31/2018
    After 7 nearly trouble free years, I had a shoulder replacement, and while it's doing good, I decided to do the electrolyte and be good for 10+ years.

    Remembering the weight (about 80# each) and the 40 batteries, I decided to build a jig to hold and invert them for draining. It worked out really well, I made a cradle and drilled 2 holes for the axle in a cider press (which is now really clean !) The cradle has a rope handle to start the lift and rotation, and at the top is a rope to prevent over-rotation. the bad juice goes into a bucket, then emptied into a couple of olive barrels.
    But taking it all apart, mixing up 90 gallons of lye, dumping the old, cleaning the batteries, and the next step - putting it all back together. Going to take about 3 or 4 more days, between the fires and smoke here, and the 90+ heat, I can only do a couple of hours with help. Started at 6am, while it was still cold and had to knock off at 11am. For the last 4 days !
    So, I've got a sacrificial bank of 4, G27 marine batteries basically on float daylight hours and i fire up a honda eu2000 to put-put all night to keep the batteries up. 90ah is not going to last long if the gas runs out.
    more pics later & at 

    //////
     8/7/2018
    About 3:30 pm, I finished all the bolts and cable re-connections, and switched back to the NiFe bank. Mercifully, it was uneventful. (no earth shattering Ka-Boom )
    Re-programed all the chargers again, and we're charging back up to full power. Might take a couple days, got a lot of smoke blowing in, today was very hazy, but the haze may extend my charge time till 6pm from all the bright scattered ambient light.

    Off-sunlight hours, I keep the 4 marine batteries on float with a honda EU-2000, about 80 hours, and 8 gallons of fuel

    Wood cradle is glued, simpson plates, and has all-thread run through the free side to trap the battery to prevent it from falling out
    No mishaps, and the original bank is charging up.





    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,125 ✭✭✭✭
    Looking great! Nice solution!  Good to be out of the smoke, more is coming ;)
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,011 ✭✭✭✭
    It's here this AM (Smoke)  (That's the blood red sun @ 8am via cellphone cam)

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,125 ✭✭✭✭
    I just heard some "cheery" news from Calfire. They say the Mendocino Complex fire will not be put out until September.
    In Mariposa, we have had that sun for 4 weeks tomorrow. :'(  The westerlies keep it from drastically dropping output.
    Remember when we only designed for winter Offgrid Mike?
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 1,928 ✭✭✭✭
    edited August 11 #18
    Iron should not costs multiples more than lead. Attributing this to lack of competition and high shipping fees associated with comparatively low volume. The earth has a lot of iron, the iron core takes up perhaps 25%, or more, of the earths volume. Iron is also more environmentally friendly to be sure. 

    To be fair, the iron batteries that I viewed appeared to employ high quality construction standards. 

    With cheap panels, iron batteries make good sense if they are reasonably priced. They are not very reasonably priced considering the cost of raw iron vs. raw lead. I have no idea why iron batteries are only made in China at this time. 

    Lithium is currently both cheaper and far more efficient in charging. Not to mention very lightweight. 
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • 706jim706jim Solar Expert Posts: 217 ✭✭✭
    We had a raft of Nife batteries salvaged from railroad wig wags. Sorry, but they were a disaster. It was just by a stroke of luck that the coast guard took them away for free as hazardous waste. Like 100 of two volt cells. Maybe new ones are better but these "perfectly good 10 year old" batteries were anything but.
    Island cottage solar system with 1400 watts of panels, Trace DR1524 MSW inverter, Trace C40 PWM controller 8 Trojan L16's. Insignia 11.5 cubic foot electric fridge. My 26th year.
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 1,928 ✭✭✭✭
    "10 year old batteries" may not be a good source for comparison. 
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,011 ✭✭✭✭
    706jim said:
    We had a raft of Nife batteries salvaged from railroad wig wags. Sorry, but they were a disaster. It was just by a stroke of luck that the coast guard took them away for free as hazardous waste. Like 100 of two volt cells. Maybe new ones are better but these "perfectly good 10 year old" batteries were anything but.
    NiCad batteries are toxic.  NiFe are fine, and after a rinse with fresh electrolyte, should charge right up, unless the plates were dry and had rusted,  Then they are worth $$$ for the nickel
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,114 ✭✭✭✭
    edited August 24 #22
    AND NiCd use the same electrolyte as NiFe,  KOH. My NiCd's are all over 25 yrs old and using the same electrolyte, well maintained... Contamination in NiCd is the killer. A very small amount of oil is used to help prevent degradation of the electrolyte....NiCd and NiFe both can be refilled to recover their capacity.... 
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 1,928 ✭✭✭✭
    mike95490 said:
    706jim said:
    We had a raft of Nife batteries salvaged from railroad wig wags. Sorry, but they were a disaster. It was just by a stroke of luck that the coast guard took them away for free as hazardous waste. Like 100 of two volt cells. Maybe new ones are better but these "perfectly good 10 year old" batteries were anything but.
    NiCad batteries are toxic.  NiFe are fine, and after a rinse with fresh electrolyte, should charge right up, unless the plates were dry and had rusted,  Then they are worth $$$ for the nickel
    I had the impression that they are simply nickel plated which adds very little nickel if similar to common gold plating. I may well be wrong on my impression.
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
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