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Will Lithium Ion batteries ever have the energy density to be used in rotorcraft?

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#1 chrispochari

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Posted 07 April 2017 - 23:00

There's been a lot of talk recently about electric airplanes and possibly also rotorcraft and I was wondering if you guys think it's total bogus or potentially viable?

I've heard that lithium ion batteries have less energy density that newspaper! 

Attached File  energycontent.png   47.2KB   1 downloads

 

 


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#2 Hobie

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 08:20

One factor for electric flight is the battery weight stays the same, charged or discharged.  Conventional fuel is burned off during flight effectively getting a bit more flight time due to lighter aircraft.  

 

Doubt we will see this for a while. But when every house has solar and battery banks, then the tech may be getting close.  I feel much of this is proof of concept to obtain research grants. 

 

Turbines are quite the perfect engine for thrust v weight.  Hard to replace in the near future.


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#3 Astro

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 11:13

http://helicopterfor...unny-meets-r44/


Sorry I don't know what type of battery they used.

#4 chrispochari

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Posted 08 April 2017 - 19:33

One factor for electric flight is the battery weight stays the same, charged or discharged.  Conventional fuel is burned off during flight effectively getting a bit more flight time due to lighter aircraft.  

 

Doubt we will see this for a while. But when every house has solar and battery banks, then the tech may be getting close.  I feel much of this is proof of concept to obtain research grants. 

 

Turbines are quite the perfect engine for thrust v weight.  Hard to replace in the near future.

Great point



#5 avbug

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 00:06

 

I've heard that lithium ion batteries have less energy density that newspaper! 

 

 

 

 

 

Is that a comparison for when the lithium ion batteries catch fire?



#6 chrispochari

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 05:26

 

 

Is that a comparison for when the lithium ion batteries catch fire?

Well I guess what they mean't is that if you convert volts to BTU you can burn newspaper and get more BTU per amount of mass than Lithium.

I did some math and found that JET A has 550 BTU/per cubic inch and lithium ion has 30 BTU/cubic inch. One gallon is 231 cubic inches.

So considering that most turboshaft engines have a power/weight ratio of 4:1 it doesn't seem that lithium ion will amount to anything.

So for lithium ion to work they would need to increase the energy density by 520 times!!



#7 avbug

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Posted 09 April 2017 - 08:48

My point was that lithium batteries in aircraft are a touchstone point, even as cargo.  They catch fire and they are dangerous.







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