Hey guys -

As I'm waiting for my first real model airplane to arrive, the ProJet RQ-11 Raven from NitroPlanes, I can't help but ask, has anyone ever experienced a Lipo battery explode?

Here's a video of one doing just that:

From what I read so far, it's pretty easy to overcharge/overdischarge Lipo batteries and they are very quick to explode if handled the wrong way. But what does this mean exactly? How can you "overdischarge" a battery? I thought that if you fly the plane and it suddenly turns off, wouldn't that shut off prevent it from discharging any more battery?

Also, as I'm a newbie, how do you guys charge your batteries? Do you use one of those chargers with the screen and buttons for controlling the charge or do you just simply connect it to an AC adaptor? Sorry if I'm being too much of a noob but I thought that these airplane batteries are charged just like the Lipos in iPhones, am I wrong?

Thanks in advance!
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  • Here is great info,



  • @ John - My Amazon Kindle has a LiPo... Wasn't really expecting that.


    Just a side question, if a battery puffs up is there a good place to dispose of them since they are no longer safe for use?

  • lets put it this way. Cars use gasoline and it is highly flammable, those that fallow the procedures when filling up don't have problems, others that don't sometimes have.

    Same thing with Lipo's, get a good charger and fallow the procedures.

  • I had one go bad a couple of days ago. My copter has had some crashes lately so it was probably damaged.

    While charging it got inflated like a balloon. So never leave it alone while charging..

  • Moderator

    You do have to be a little careful as its easy to screw them up so they don't work too well. If you are new to RC just be careful, measure twice, cut once.


    There was this thread here http://diydrones.com/profiles/blogs/lipos-go-booom

  • The dangers of LiPo batteries I believe are a little exaggerated and based on issues early on in their use. If you charge them with the correct charger at correct rates, and don't puncture them they are very safe to use. I have damaged the odd battery very badly (bent like a banana, heavy crashes into solid ground) and never had one fail even one that was totally discharged and in the weather for around a month still came good. That being said, I would not recommend using batteries in such a state, but they will take more abuse than people give them credit for.
  • Moderator
    Note it's NOT an explosion "per se" but the cell will "vent with smoke and flame". We've had some fun with old batteries in an safe exposed area, YouTube has lots of videos, here's one (with some humor): LiPo Fire
  • Thanks Jack!
  • Moderator
    Best explanation I have ever seen Jack, I'm going to nick it.
  • Battery gets too hot, discharges too fast, or discharges too deep -> generates gas which causes the case to puff -> case breaks -> water vapor in air reacts with lithium -> explosion


    Discharge & recharge rate has to be much lower than the rated rate for most of the discount batteries or they puff.



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