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Four injured on United after lithium battery catches fire

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Four injured on United after lithium battery catches fire

Old 7th Feb 2023, 20:35
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Four injured on United after lithium battery catches fire

Four people were taken to the hospital after an external battery caught fire on a United Airlines flight early Tuesday, officials said.

Shortly after takeoff, the device was found on fire inside a seat back pocket of first class, United told ABC News.

https://abcnews.go.com/US/4-injured-...ry?id=96953705
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 10:05
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Best wishes to the crew, this needs to be policed before a really major incident occurs, on check-in, maybe a requirement to demonstrate the laptop has only 20% or less battery reserve thru security before boarding, less stored energy should things go wrong.
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 11:07
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Originally Posted by DroneDog View Post
Best wishes to the crew, this needs to be policed before a really major incident occurs, on check-in, maybe a requirement to demonstrate the laptop has only 20% or less battery reserve thru security before boarding, less stored energy should things go wrong.
Less cheapo made in China's one would probably do the trick.
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 11:29
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Originally Posted by DroneDog View Post
Best wishes to the crew, this needs to be policed before a really major incident occurs, on check-in, maybe a requirement to demonstrate the laptop has only 20% or less battery reserve thru security before boarding, less stored energy should things go wrong.
Seems a bit pointless with charging points in most seats now.
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 19:55
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Originally Posted by DroneDog View Post
Best wishes to the crew, this needs to be policed before a really major incident occurs, on check-in, maybe a requirement to demonstrate the laptop has only 20% or less battery reserve thru security before boarding, less stored energy should things go wrong.
Perhaps counter-intuitively, some lithium chemistry (lithium Ion, I believe) batteries can be at significant risk of catching fire when deeply discharged. Keeping most lithium chemistry batteries near to 50% is a safe level for them. It seems the danger does not tally closely with the remaining charge in the battery.

So it is not as simple as checking batteries are under 20% charged.
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 22:16
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Listening to the ATC audio, emergency compounded by loss of transmit audio from United when pilots masked up. ATC handled it like a boss!
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 22:52
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Originally Posted by ZFT View Post
Seems a bit pointless with charging points in most seats now.
That nice but what does an individual do when there out in the middle of a field. Go chance the external battery wasn't ment for use on the plane but possibly elsewhere
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Old 8th Feb 2023, 23:49
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Originally Posted by Bksmithca View Post
That nice but what does an individual do when there out in the middle of a field. Go chance the external battery wasn't ment for use on the plane but possibly elsewhere
I have no idea what you mean?
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Old 9th Feb 2023, 00:12
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Originally Posted by ZFT View Post
I have no idea what you mean?
The external battery allows users to recharge the internal battery on cell phones, handheld GPS units. All of these things can be used off the airplane where there is no plug-ins available
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Old 9th Feb 2023, 00:38
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Hereís the audio:

https://forums.liveatc.net/index.php...0;attach=11582
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Old 22nd Feb 2023, 01:22
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Originally Posted by Bksmithca View Post
The external battery allows users to recharge the internal battery on cell phones, handheld GPS units. All of these things can be used off the airplane where there is no plug-ins available
Exactly. I have a small 5000mAh external Lithium battery that I use to recharge or supplement my Smartphone's battery when I'm traveling. Apparently someone left a bad or defective battery inside a seatpocket.
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Old 22nd Feb 2023, 02:21
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The external battery
​​​​​​​small 5000mAh external Lithium battery
A powerbank.
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Old 22nd Feb 2023, 05:42
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Originally Posted by ehwatezedoing View Post
Less cheapo made in China's one would probably do the trick.
Arenít they all made in China?
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Old 26th Feb 2023, 02:51
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Originally Posted by Bksmithca View Post
The external battery allows users to recharge the internal battery on cell phones, handheld GPS units. All of these things can be used off the airplane where there is no plug-ins available
and are usually available at any electrical retailer, most inbound duty free shops, and many gas stations.
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Old 26th Feb 2023, 09:26
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And of course in nearly every terminal past check in and security in the commonplace electronic shops, and rechargeable via in-seat power outlets.
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Old 5th Mar 2023, 20:47
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Fully agree, was saying this 10 years ago when I worked in part 21J cabin design, disaster waiting to happen,
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Old 6th Mar 2023, 18:50
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Originally Posted by pilotmike View Post
Perhaps counter-intuitively, some lithium chemistry (lithium Ion, I believe) batteries can be at significant risk of catching fire when deeply discharged.
That is not exactly correct. As long as they are deeply discharged nothing can happen. The problem with deep- discharging is that it damages the separator inside the cell. There are chemical processes which happen when a LiPo/LiIon cell drops beneath 3,0V per cell. These processes decrease the internal resistance between the active layers. When after such a deep- discharge the battery is charged again, the risk of a fire are extremely increased due to this internal short- circuit. The cell heats up, the polymer separator foil melts and a full- blown short circuit will happen at some stage. That is what happens in a so called Thermal Runaway. That is why deep- discharging is considered a fire hazard with LiPos/LiIons. As long as the cells are completely empty you can drive a screw driver through a cell and nothing will happe. Do that with a cell >~60% charge state and have a nice fireworks.
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