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Battery Flex PCB application

Battery Flex PCB application
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Battery Flex PCB application

  • Battery Flex PCB application
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    Phone battery modification, transplanting a PCB flex onto differing voltage?

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    I'm contemplating getting a Sony battery's PCB flex soldered to a Samsung S8+ battery. This due to new official genuine products proving impossible to find for a 2014 device now, especially with a battery manufacture date within two years. Also there's no reputable third party manufacturers either.

    Photo of S8+ battery. It's a significant upgrade in power to make it worthwhile while fitting decently, otherwise any other model may work. Successor Sony batteries have a different arrangement of the PCB flex which is why a transplant modification is going to be necessary either way. This XDA forums thread demonstrating removing the PCB flex from an older genuine Sony onto a third party battery helped inspire me.


    Purpose of Battery Packs?

    Battery Cells come in fixed voltages and capacities. Capacities do vary, but voltages don't. In order to meet your power requirements a battery pack may need to be used. The type of battery, the number of cells, the shape of the pack, and the components of the pack will be determined by the voltage and load current of the device being powered.

    Other considerations will be available space, operating temperature, transportation requirements, usage conditions, and charge/discharge specifications.

    Battery Pack Assembly

    Heat Shrink Tubing

    The most common way to hold the pack together is to use heat shrink tubing. Heat shrink tubing is typically made of polyvinyl chloride and varies in thickness based upon battery type and configuration.

    Lead Wires

    To connect the pack to a device, vinyl clad electrical wire that conforms to UL requirements is typically used. Red for the positive and black for the negative are the standard colors.
    Custom Battery Pack Assembly
    Thermal/Thermostat Components

    Thermal protectors (thermistors) are typically used to prevent overcharge and overheat. These components are connected in a direct line circuit to the battery.


    The ends of the lead wires are usually connected to connectors specified by the customer to match their requirement for connection to the device.


    There are several standard adhesives that are used to connect the batteries inside the pack that are standard in the industry. Some customers specify which adhesive is to be used that they believe will improve the performance for their specific application.

    Nickel Strips

    Nickel foil is used to spot weld packs together. Nickel is fairly low resistance, yet has enough resistivity to be spot welded. It is strong, has very good corrosion resistance, and will not oxidize easily.

    This table gives examples of the resistance of nickel spot weld strips.

    Cell Size (cm) Foil Thickness (cm) Strip Width (cm) Strip Length (cm) Resistance (milliOhms)
    AA 0.018 0.5 1.4 1.0
    AA 0.025 0.5 1.4 0.76
    Sub C 0.025 0.05 2.3 1.2
    Sub C 0.025 1.0 2.3 0.6
    Sub C 0.018 0.5 2.3 1.7
    D 0.018 1.0 3.3 1.2
    D 0.025 1.0 3.3 0.9
    D 0.025 2.0 3.3 0.4
    Protective Cases

    The most typical type of protective battery cases are injected molded plastic or steel cases. These can be custom designed for every application.

    Over the course of life most batteries release hydrogen, and sometimes oxygen. Take this into account if you are designing a closed system, such as waterproof lights, weatherproof installations, etc. Some method of releasing or absorbing the hydrogen, flooding with air or inert gas should be used. In closed cabinets some provision for ventilation is necessary to prevent hydrogen gas from accumulating.

    Electrical Considerations

    How many amp-hours do I need?

    Cell capacity is rated in amp-hours or milliamp hours. The symbol for capacity is C. This is amps times hours. Divide by hours and you get amps, divide by amps and you get hours. For example a 5 amp hour battery is the same as a 5000 milliamp-hour battery. If you want to discharge in 10 hours, you can get a current of 5/10 = 0.5 amps. If you need 100 milliamps current, then you can run for 5000/100 = 50 hours.

    Often a discharge or charge rate is given proportional to C. So a discharge rate of C/5 means C/(5 hours), or the constant current to fully discharge the battery in 5 hours.

    The calculation of run time versus current is a rough estimate, but is accurate under the right conditions. The faster you discharge, the lower the capacity of a battery. This trade-off depends on the battery chemistry and construction. Usually the capacity of a battery is quoted at a C/20 discharge rate. So an 12 amp hour battery sealed lead acid battery will actually put out a steady 0.6 amps for 20 hours. However, if you discharge the same battery at 12 amps, you would expect to run an hour, but you will only last for 22 minutes. Also, if you wan to run at 10 milliampere you will get less than the expected 1200 days, since self-discharge of the battery will limit your run time.

    Voltage Requirements

    The first question to answer is "how much voltage do I need?" The second is "how many cells in series do I need?"

    The voltage of any cell is a moving target. The following table shows the range of the various chemistries:

    Chemistry Type Nominal Voltage Fully Charged Voltage Fully Discharged Voltage Minimum Charge Voltage
    NiMH Secondary 1.2 V 1.4 V 1.0 V 1.55 V
    NiCad Secondary 1.2 V 1.4 V 1.0 V 1.50 V
    Lead Acid Secondary 2.0 V 2.1 V 1.75 V 2.3 - 2.35 V
    So a 10 cell pack of NiMH cells would have 14 Volts when fully charged, and run down to 10 volts when fully discharged. Your system must be able to tolerate this voltage range.

    Furthermore, if you want to be able to charge while your system is running, the system must be able to accept the charging voltage, which is always higher than the nominal or the fully charged voltage. Work with the charger manufacturer to make sure that you have this problem solved.

    Matching Cells in a Pack

    Be careful to match the cells in a battery pack. When a battery pack is near zero volts under load the weaker cells will go into reversal, and suffer damage and perhaps venting.

    The specific question is about the S8+ battery being 3.85V Nominal, 4.4V Charge. Whereas the Sony i'm coming from is 3.8V, 4.35V. Will that be a problem for the PCB or phone in general to accept? Is the only difference that the PCB/motherboard will be limited to charging the new battery to 4.35V?

    voltage batteries pcb mobile flex
    shareimprove this question
    edited Aug 29 at 3:27
    asked Aug 29 at 2:07

    1) Please read the guidelines of the forum before posting, don't cross post, It angers the Internets. 2) Post a specific question 3) This isn't a repair forum, so you need to edit your question and make it design related or it will be closed – laptop2d Aug 29 at 2:40

    Sorry, edit fixed. – Infy_AsiX Aug 29 at 3:14
    add a comment
    1 Answer
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    As I understand, you want to retrofit the new Samsung S8+ battery into some older Sony device. It should be no problem, as long as you manage to connect plus and minus terminals correctly to the older Sony pads without shorting anything, and make these pads to connect reliably.

    The difference 4.35V (Sony charger) versus 4.4V (Samsung charger) will give you somewhat less capacity, but more charge-discharge life.

    The only problem I see is that the Samsung battery has some third terminal wire, which is usually associated with thermal sensor. If not connected to proper charger circuitry, the battery might have a chance to overheat and explode, so there will be some safety issue. The other issue, how do you envision to fit this long battery into the squarish compartment of old Sony phone? Duct tape?

    shareimprove this answer
    answered Aug 29 at 3:18

    Ali Chen

    Yes, I see thanks. Good point, I forgot to consider how it's thermal sensors are setup. I incidentally saw recently in this youtube that the S8's battery temperature sensor seems to be mounted separately externally. – Infy_AsiX Aug 29 at 3:45

    The phone i'm retrofitting to is a Z3 Compact. It houses the battery length ways behind the motherboard. The battery space measures with a little spare space for the S8+ battery surprisingly. Using an external case without the back panel will allow enough width to not squash the battery. I've tested the Z3C battery running attached while outside of the body to find the temp does not drop as cool as the actual battery surface temp. Plus when it's cool and goes back into a warm body the sensor temp drops immediately. So the sensor is in the phone body somewhere. – Infy_AsiX Aug 29 at 4:20

    Many devices that are battery powered require the use of heaters in order to function properly and quickly in their operating environment. Flexible heater circuits are a very popular choice when profile, size or weight limitations are a major consideration.
    Much of the world we live in is battery powered. Most machines or devices that cannot be permanently attached to an external power source use some sort of battery. There are many types of batteries that tend to be used in different situations. The website is a useful and thorough source of information on batteries. For example the website lists the following types of batteries:

    Nickel Cadmium (NiCd): Primarily used in radios, biomedical equipment, power tools and professional video equipment. This battery contains toxic metals and is not environmentally friendly.
    Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH): Reduced life when compared to NiCd, but is more environmentally friendly. Primary applications are mobile devices and laptop computers.
    Lead Acid: Heavy in weight, but delivers a lot of power. Hospital equipment, wheelchairs and some automobiles are the primarily application.
    Lithium Ion (Li‑ion): High-energy and lightweight, probably the fastest growing type of battery. Not considered safe enough for consumer type applications.
    Lithium Ion Polymer (Li‑ion polymer): Very low profile and light weight. Primarily used in mobile phones.

    More and more lithium ion applications are utilizing prismatic or pouch cell (soft pack) designs which are an excellent way to reduce weight and cost, as well as optimize packaging efficiency at the battery level.

    Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) battery power systems are increasingly becoming the choice for many applications because of Li-Ion's higher specific energy density than the core technologies of the previous decade such as nickel cadmium and lead acid batteries.

    Li-Ion technology has higher voltage output per cell than many other systems. Therefore, fewer cells are needed for a given battery voltage.
    Prismatic and Pouch Battery Packs
    Prismatic Cell Battery Packs

    Introduced in the early 1990s, the prismatic cell satisfies the demand for thinner sizes and lower manufacturing costs. Wrapped in elegant packages resembling a box of chewing gum or a small chocolate bar, prismatic cells make optimal use of space by using the layered approach. These cells are predominantly found in mobile phones with lithium-ion. No universal format exists and each manufacturer designs its own. If the housing design allows a few millimeters extra in a cell phone or laptop, the manufacturer designs a new pack for the sake of higher capacity. High volume justifies this move.

    Prismatic Cell Battery Packs
    Prismatic Cell Battery Packs

    Prismatic cells are also making critical inroads into larger formats. Packaged in welded aluminum housings, the cells deliver capacities of 20 to 30Ah and are primarily used for electric powertrains in hybrid and electric vehicles. Figure 4shows the prismatic cell.

    The prismatic cell requires a slightly thicker wall size to compensate for the decreased mechanical stability from the cylindrical design, resulting in a small capacity drop. Optimizing use of space makes up this loss. Prismatic cells for portable devices range from 400mAh to 2,000mAh.

    Prismatic cells are contained in a rectangular can. The electrodes are either stacked or in the form of a flattened spiral. They are usually designed to have a very thin profile for use in small electronic devices such as mobile phones. Prismatic cells provide better space utilization at the expense of slightly higher manufacturing costs, lower energy density and more vulnerability to swelling, but these are minor effects which don't constitute a major disadvantage.

    The prismatic cell improves space utilization and allows flexible design but it can be more expensive to manufacture, less efficient in thermal management and have a shorter cycle life than the cylindrical design.

    Pouch Cell Battery Packs

    In 1995, the pouch cell surprised the battery world with a radical new design. Rather than using a metallic cylinder and glass-to-metal electrical feed-through for insulation, conductive foil tabs welded to the electrode and sealed to the pouch carry the positive and negative terminals to the outside.

    The pouch cell makes the most efficient use of space and achieves a 90 to 95 percent packaging efficiency, the highest among battery packs. Eliminating the metal enclosure reduces weight but the cell needs some alternative support in the battery compartment.

    The pouch cell offers a simple, flexible and lightweight solution to battery design. Exposure to high humidity and hot temperature can shorten service life.

    Pouch Cell Applications

    The pouch battery pack can be found in applications in consumer, military, as well as automotive industries. No standardized pouch cells exist, so each manufacturer builds the cells for a specific application. Pouch packs are commonly Li-polymer. Its specific energy is often lower and the cell is less durable than Li-ion in the cylindrical package.

    Pouch Cell Battery Pack Inside Application
    Pouch Cell Battery Pack Inside Application

    Swelling Pouch Cells

    Swelling or bulging as a result of gas generation during charge and discharge is a concern. Battery manufacturers insist that these batteries do not generate excess gases that can lead to swelling. Nevertheless, excess swelling can occur and most is due to faulty manufacturing, and not misuse. Some dealers have failures due to swelling of as much as three percent on certain batches. The pressure from swelling can crack a battery cover, and in some cases break the display and electronic circuit board. Manufacturers say that an inflated cell is safe. While this may be true, do not puncture a swollen cell in close proximity to heat or fire; the escaping gases can ignite. Figure 6 shows a swelled pouch cell.

    Swelling can occur as part of gas generation. Battery manufacturers are at odds why this happens. A 5mm (0.2") battery in a hard shell can grow to 8mm (0.3"), more in a foil package.

    Key Specifications/Special Features:
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    Cover film thickness: 1mil
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    Produce standard: IPC-6013

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    1 Layer: 1-6 layer
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    5 Through hole size (min): 0.2mm
    6 Through hole tolerance: ±0.025mm
    7 Hole copper thickness: min 8μm; max 38μm
    8 Min line width/space: 0.04/0.04mm
    9 Etching tolerance: ±20%
    10 The accuracy of the pattern on the hole: ±2mil
    11 Punching size (max): φ3.175mm
    12 Punching size (min): φ2.0mm
    13 Punching aperture thickness (max): 0.2mm
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    19 Available laminates material: Pl, PET, FR4-Pl
    20 Copper foil thickness: 12um, 18um, 35um, 70um

    1. Camera, digital camera, DV
    2. Printer, fax machine, scanner
    3. Laptop, LCD screen, CD-ROM drive, hard disk, HDD
    4. Mobile phone, mobile battery, walkie talkie, mobile antenna, SD card
    5. Recorder head, laser bald, VCD, DVD
    6. Car, car DVD, auto meter, GPS
    7. Aerospace, satellite
    8. Medical equipment
    9. Instrumentation

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    To prevent swelling, the manufacturer adds excess film to create a “gas bag” outside the cell. During the first charge, gases escape into the gasbag, which is then cut off and the pack resealed as part of the finishing process. Expect some swelling on subsequent charges; 8 to 10 percent over 500 cycles is normal. Provision must be made in the battery compartment to allow for expansion. It is best not to stack pouch cells but to lay them flat side by side. Prevent sharp edges that could stress the pouch cell as they expand.
    Swelling Pouch Cell Battery
    Swelling Pouch Cell Battery as a Result of Gas Generation During Charge and Discharge
    Pouch casings are typically used for Lithium Polymer cells with solid electrolytes, providing a low cost "flexible" (sometimes in unintended ways) construction. The electrodes and the solid electrolyte are usually stacked in layers or laminations and enclosed in a foil envelope. The solid electrolyte permits safer, leak-proof cells. The foil construction allows very thin and light weight cell designs suitable for high power applications but because of the lack of rigidity of the casing the cells are prone to swelling as the cell temperature rises. Allowance must be made for the possibility of swelling when choosing cells to fit a particular cavity specified for the battery compartment. The cells are also vulnerable to external mechanical damage and battery pack designs should be designed to prevent such possibilities.

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    Each of the above batteries has its own advantages and disadvantages in terms of life, power, size, maintenance and environmental impact.
    There is one characteristic that all batteries have in common; their performance is affected by temperature. Batteries will lose power and life as the temperature drops. The degree of this loss varies based on type of battery, size and application. Batteries that typically operate at 100% at around 80 degrees F will only produce 50% of capacity at 0 F. Some batteries will stop functioning all together at -5F. The Lithium Ion battery is very popular in Unmanned Aviation Vehicles, laptop computers, and a variety of other applications where energy density combined with light weight is needed. The Lithium Ion battery also tends to be significantly affected by cold temperatures, so while this battery is ideal in terms of energy, life and weight, it would not be feasible to use in cold temperatures without something to keep warm.
    Silicone or polyimide based flexible heaters happen to be ideal for keeping Lithium Ion batteries within a satisfactory operating temperature range. Flexible heater circuits can operate at very low wattage to produce a minimal drain on the battery. They are thin, flexible and can be “tuned” to just about any heat requirement. In some apparatuses the power from the battery being heated is used to provide the heat. In other cases, a secondary source of power is used. Any device that is motorized can charge the battery as well as provide added power to the flexible heater. Common uses for battery heaters are UAV rugged laptops that need to be used outdoors, and aviation products that need to fly at high altitude. The battery backup system on an outdoor mounted security camera may also adopt a battery powered heater.
    Lithium Ion batteries are not the only power sources that need heater circuits. Battery heaters are used in just about every application where a device is battery powered and runs or is stored in cold weather. As an example there are heating pads and wraps that are designed for cars or heavy equipment batteries. Most of these require an external voltage source (120 or 240).
    All Flex is a major manufacturer of flexible heater circuits (polyimide and silicone). Heater circuits are available in standard configurations that can be shipped from stock, or they can be custom fabricated to meet the exact size,

    Key Specifications/Special Features:

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    Minimum conductor width: 0.25mm
    Minimum conductor space: 0.15mm
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    Minimum diameter of hole: 0.30 (P.T.H)
    Cover layer: 0.5-mil polyimide and 0.015mm thick adhesive
    Surface treatment: ENIG
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    Design of coin-cell battery holders for miniature handheld medical devices

    The battery holder design plays a critical role in handheld medical device performance and reliability, helping minimize its size and weight to make it smaller and more streamlined

    Memory Protection Devices, Inc.

    Handheld medical devices face numerous hurdles on the way to market. First, they need to obtain FDA 510(K) pre-marketing approval for safety and effectiveness. Then, they must be manufactured to the highest quality standards using superior grade components to ensure long-term reliability and greater customer satisfaction.
    All phases of product design are critical, including the selection of the battery holder. Often considered an afterthought, the battery holder plays a central role in product performance and reliability. For example, the choice of battery holder can help minimize size and weight to make the device more streamlined and miniaturized (fig.1). The ideal battery holder can also enhance product ruggedness to better survive normal wear-and-tear as well as the extreme abuse of being dropped and manhandled, all the while maintaining a strong electrical connection that serves as the lifeblood of the device.

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