If you been anything but living under a rock for the last three years you’re likely well aware that our news media is designed to sell sensationalism not tell the actual news/truth. Like any company, these businesses are in this to make money. They do this by selling scare and dividing us as a planet it’s how they win in their business..
How on Earth does this relate to boating you ask? Well, hardly a day goes by we don’t hear of a lithium-ion fire. These fires or claims of fire are often untrue, made up, or lack data entirely. Hardly a day goes by on a boating forum or group where someone does not claim “My neighbors boat burned due to Lithium batteries. When these individuals are asked to furnish proof they instantly go silent..
The most recent fire that falls into this category would be the fire that occurred in Valencia Spain on board the Yacht PESA. After contacting authorities in Valencia and going back-and-forth with emails for the last two or three weeks the official cause of the fire has not been determined. However, this has not stoppedthe “news” media from suggesting lithium batteries were involved. It sells news..
With about five minutes of Google foo I learned a few things very quickly.
#1 Sanlorrenzo (the boat builder) does use Li-ion batteries though NMC not LiFePO4 ( and yes LiFePO4 is a Li-Ion chemistry)
#2 The official accident report has not been released
This has not stopped the media from jumping on the sensationalism bandwagon. As can be seen the media will use what ever tactics work..
But, but, Li-Ion is Li-Ion. No, No, No it’s not!
Charcoal lighter-fluid and gasoline will both light charcoal. Which one do you suppose is safer? Li-Ion batteries are no different. There are highly volatile Li-Ion chemistries and very safe Li-Ion chemistries. LiFePO4 falls into the safer end of the spectrum.
TIP:any article blaming Li-Ion for anything that does not mention the chemistry used, should be an article you dismiss and move on from. Anyone writing an article on Li-Ion who fails to include the chemistry is not fit to be a writer or “journalist”..
So what chemistry has Sanlorenzo used? MG Systems a Li-Ion battery manufacturer boasts on their own web site that Sanlorenzo uses MG Systems HE Series Li-Ion Batteries. If you click on “check the specs” this is what you’ll find..
The MG Systems HE series uses the ENERGY DENSE NMC Li-ion chemistry
Dig a bit deeper and we find this.
If you have been reading this website for any period of time you’ll quickly realize that there is only one lithium ion chemistry we have recommended and that is lithium iron phosphate /LiFePO4.
As of yet, in more than12 years asking for proof with images of a lithium ion phosphate battery fire that was caused by overcharging or malfunction in the BMS and offering to pay for these images we still have no images of a LiFePO4 fire..We even have images of a 12V LiFePO4 battery over-charged at 100+/-V and still there was no fire.
The SX 88 series of yachts according to MG systems uses an NMC chemistry (Nickel Manganese Cobalt) not LiFePO4. NMC is a high energy density lithium ion chemistry. It is not a chemistry we would ever suggest using for a house bank on a boat. Can NMC be designed to be safe? Absolutely, but being a less stable chemistry than lithium iron phosphate there are always higher risks.
This was an NMC battery for a battery powered cooler
Demand more from your news sources! When they write a hit piece on Li-Ion write to them and ask what the chemistry it was. Ask for a copy of the investigation report etc.. The new media is out to sell sensationalism not report news..