Power Electronics

Space-worthy Lithium Batteries Available to General Customers

Saft, a manufacturer of high-end batteries for industrial applications, is now offering its specialized, super robust LSH 20 HTS lithium-thionyl chloride (Li-SOCl2) cylindrical D-size cells to general customers.

The high-drain/high-pulse cells, developed originally to offer the ultimate in vibration, shock and temperature resistance for space probes, have already been deployed in demanding oil and gas exploration monitoring applications, such as MWD (measurement while drilling) devices. LSH 20 HTS cells also are finding applications in many types of downhole monitoring and measurement, such as MWD and LWD (logging while drilling). In addition, they are ideal for military applications with high vibration levels, such as ejector seat beacons.

The LSH 20 HTS cell has a nominal voltage of 3.6 V and a 12.0-Ah capacity (at 50 mA +70°C and 2.0 V cut off). It provides short-term pulse currents up to 4 A and a maximum continuous current of 1 A. It has a low self-discharge of less than 3% per year when stored at +20°C.

The super robust LSH 20 HTS cell is a mechanically upgraded version of Saft’s well established LSH HT cell, already capable of operating over temperatures from -60°C to +120°C. The LSH 20 HTS also can withstand 48-hr excursions up to +125°C. This latest version was developed originally for space applications, such as the Lander Philae on the Rosetta ESA probe, to withstand the high levels of mechanical shock, vibration and acceleration during launch and stage separation. LSH 20 HTS battery packs will power Philae during its descent and landing operations. The LSH 20 HTS can withstand axial vibration of 20 G rms (2 Hz to 100 Hz), radial vibration of 30 G rms (2 Hz to 100 Hz), 30 G peak (30 Hz to 2 k Hz) and random 20 G rms (30 Hz to 1 KHz).

These batteries feature a power-optimized spiral electrode construction, with a non-flammable electrolyte, contained within a hermetically sealed stainless-steel container with a built-in safety vent. Saft recommends that the LSH 20 HTS should be purchased as part of a preassembled, custom-built battery pack.

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