Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

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R
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Hi!
Today I decided to take pictures of the recharging process of my vectrix.
If you also post similar pictures and data we will be able to discover differences in voltage temperature etc. This can help us to recognise battery problems by detecting uncomon charging secuence.

This are my results (anybody knows how to post hi resolution images??):

proces carrega vectrix.jpg

bike: 2007 unit - 17.600 km (10.000 km on last battery)
Software: Last SW installed
Condition: Previously discharged until red battery turned on.

Time _ Temp _ voltage _ charging sec _ ampers _ bars
00:03 __ 24 __ 126v __ CP-151 __ 11.8Ah __ 0
01:07 __ 26 __ 141v __ CP-151 __ 10.5Ah __ 7
02:01 __ 26 __ 142v __ CP-151 __ 10.4Ah __ 12
02:29 __ 26 __ 142v __ CP-151 __ 10.4Ah __ 15
03:0n __ 28 __ 145v __ CC-152 __ 3.0Ah __ 17

After 03:0n I had to disconect the bike and head for home.
My battery's voltage went up from 118 to 141-142 in 1:07h, and stayed charging at 142v for 80 minutes.
The timer might have suffered a reset on 03.0n, it displayed 00:02
During CC-152 the bluetooth icon turned on!! Any idea why??

P1110755 (Custom).JPG

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Mik
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

You can find a detailed report here: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/2547-vectrix-reports#comment-13640

Unfortunately, it has a number of errors in it, but I can't be bothered to fix it up.

It was all very new back then....

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AndY1
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

I don't know what happened to my charging process yesterday.

I started charging at 12 bars - 140V - 19'C. Then, it remained at 145V - 19'C for a long time and the voltage, nor the temperature reading wouldn't change. Clock was working ok and battery bars gauge was filling. When 17th bar appeared, the reading was still 145V - 19'C and I disconnected, because I had a feeling, that there's something not right here.
I unplugged,turned the bike on, flipped the kill-switch and pulled the left brake. Battery temperature was at 22'C and Voltage at 144V.

I don't know what happened, but I hope it wasn't overcharging the battery with 10.5A, because Voltage and temperature readings froze.

It's not nice not knowing, whether the charging process is working ok or not. If not, it's a sure way to kill your battery.

R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Some bikes can easely reach 150-151v. If my bike stayed at 142v for 80 minutes, the frozen 145v can be normal. 3 degree increase after shuting down the fans can be normal also. This the reason why it is important to encaourage other people to conduct this same experiment, to have further data and know if situations like yours are ok.

AndY1
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Thanx!

Those 3 degrees difference were in a time frame of 1 minute (from time it unplugged the bike to the time I pulled the left brake). Is that normal? I don't have enough experience with the new software, because with the old one, I could never check battery temperature without plugging in the bike.

R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Hi!
Today I decided to take more pictures of the recharging process of my vectrix.

Here are the results:

Status before charging:

V1 before charging.jpg

Cooling delay of 1:30h (CO). It wa cancelled after 1h of cooling.

V2 cooling delay.jpg

Charging progress at 12-10Ah for around 2:45h (CP)

V3 charging phase.jpg
V4 charging phase.jpg

Then a transition delay of 15 minutes (TR), followed by the second charging phase: completing charge of around 1h(CC)

V5 transition + completing charging.jpg
V6 completing charging.jpg

Aftr the charging is complete, It starts the first cooling (CO). It lasts 1:06h, with two parts:

1- Cooling for 1h
2- Recharge at 10Ah for 6 minutes

V7 cooling 1.jpg

After the first cooling, it starts the equalitzation, which lasts 4 hours. In contains 5 parts:
charging at 3ah - delay - charging at 3 Ah - delay - finally charging again at 3Ah.
My voltage reached here 149V...

V8 equalize.jpg
V9 equalize.jpg
V10 equalize.jpg
V11 equalize.jpg
V12 equalize.jpg

When the equalization is finished, the second cooling phase (CO) kicks in. It lasts another 1:06 hours, with another two periods:

1- Cooling for 1h
2- Recharge at 10Ah for 6 minutes. This recharge was programed for 6 minutes, but for some reason the system decided to turn off the charging before, despite there was 3:52 minutes remaining in the countdown. In the last image the nail is falling down.

V13 cooling 2.jpg
V14 cooling 2.jpg

Pictures from immediately after finishing charging + equalizing, and from some hours later. Voltage drops from 147v to 142V...
10:16 hours of charging+equalizing + 1 h of previous cooling, totalling 11:16h

V15 end.jpg

Summary:

Before charging, optional.
Nh cooling delay __________(CO)

Charging
2:45h charging at 12-10 Ah (CP)
0:15 min of transition ____(TR)
1:00h charging at 3 Ah ____(CC)

The battery now is full.

Aditionally the bike in this case decided to perform an equalization:
1:06h of cooling __________(CO)
4:00h equalizing __________(EO)
1:06 of cooling. __________(CO)

I'll post another message with XLSX file containing all data. Feel free to use it, I hope it might be of some use to anybody.:-)

R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

I must add that this was the 2nd consecutive time that my vectrix is discharged until the red battery light turns on. During the last 4 remaining bars, I could notice that the battery was much stronger than before, let me explain: When the voltage reached the 125-129V level it didn't fall as fast as usually does to the death line (117v), This healthy voltage resulted into improved range.

It really does seem that 2 consecutive deep discharges helps to calibrate the battery and increase the range, however I still don't like to discharge the battery to these low levels...

On the other hand, you can find the XLSX file at the end of this post (hotlinkink does not work):

http://www.casacota.cat/solar/YaBB.pl?num=1253474985/all

Taula_carrega_vectrix.xlsx

Feel free to suggest any improvements,
R

Mik
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Thanks for that, R, very interesting!

Does the needle always show "0km/h" during tr in the newer firmware versions?

It would be nice to compare actual energy draw.

By the way, you are using the wrong term for the charging current in you otherwise excellent report. It should be A (not Ah).
Ah means ampere-hours, which is the product of the current and the time that is has been flowing for. It is also the unit used to describe battery capacity.

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R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Hi mik,

Does the needle always show "0km/h" during tr in the newer firmware versions?

I'm not sure. In this particular case the needle shows 0 amps... let's hope more people posts more samples!
I can't remember which number showed in previous SW versions in my bike. It's a pity I haven't done this before.

It would be nice to compare actual energy draw

If only I could borrow the suitable equipment here in barcelona... :-(

are using the wrong term for the charging current

thanks for pointing out this mistake. I apologise, before purchasing a vectrix I knew very few electronics and batteries, and I still need some further learning. I must admit I'm confused: I thought that if the needle was marking 10 ampers, in fact it was showing an electricity flow in a period time. Let me explain:, If the flow is 10 ampers, in half hour would have flown a total amount of 5 ampers, with an intensity of 10 ampers every hour. The needle shows instant flow, not a total amount of energy... I think that in the report I'm specially refering to the instant flow which is marked by the needle... and it should be marked Ah...

antiscab
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

not quite.

A is the instant value. it means 1 coulomb of charge per second.
Ah is the accumulated value. It means 1A over a period of 1hr, or 3600 coulombs of charge.

so a flow of 10A over half an hour is 5Ah.

if the needle is showing instantaneous, then it would be in A.

As far as i know, the Vectrix never shows Ah on any of its displays?

Matt

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Daily Ride:
2007 Vectrix, modified with 42 x Thundersky 60Ah
Vectrix 60Ah Lithium Tyres Fuel Registration Insurance cycle analyst replacement TC Charger
conversion
Spent so far: $5800 + $7000 + $1720 + $960 + $320 + $720 + $140 + $600
Cost to do it again: $2500 + $5600 + $1720 + $960 + $320 + $720 + $140 + $600
Cost for a Petrol bike:$6000 + + $1440 + $6000 + $800 + $1400 + $3200 servicing
Total spent: $17260
Total to do again: $12560
Total to have used a petrol bike: $18840
Total distance travelled so far: 79'120km

R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Dear antiscab
Thanks for the explanation. I didn't know that amper is a time embeded value. How can I edit the post and solve the mistake?

Certainly, the Vectrix never shows Ah on any of its displays. You'll need a sepecial SW upgrade or an external device to measure accumulated Ah.

AndY1
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

R wrote:

Hi!
Today I decided to take more pictures of the recharging process of my vectrix.

Here are the results:

Thank you for this very informative post!

R
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Thank you for this very informative post!

You're wellcome. I'm contacting teachers from UPC ETseib in order to borrow suitable equipment and record charging intensity of a Vectrix every minute. Quite difficult by now.
On the other hand I'm posting again the very first pictures of the first record, updated to the new format.

vfirst 1.jpg
vfirst 2.jpg
Now they're more easy to read.Comparing them with the second recording of data, here the voltage is around 1 volt lower during the end part of CP 151.

RaDy
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Buen trabajo, Roger, ill try to compare mine.

AndY1
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Does anyone know; at what point, if the EQ part of charging is interrupted, the EQ is repeated at next charging (if it lasts that long)?

Mik
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

This thread has been added to the Vectrix Collaborative Handbook, please stay on topic!

Nicely done! Thanks for all the work you put into it!

Please consider to create book page next time you start an interesting thread like this. It will then allow you to edit the first post repeatedly in response to what is being learned in the thread.
It's easy to do, just click around the handbook pages a bit, you will certainly figure it out!

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R
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

During winter the voltages get around 2 volts higher. This picture was taken during charging complete phase (cc-152), the battery astonishingly reaching 150v.

SANY0103 (Medium).JPG

clagros
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Hi Folks!
Taking a look to the nice post and pictures from R -Wed, 09/23/2009 - 00:37 #12, I was very surprised to see that when the charge session started, the hand was close to 120 "km/h".
In my case, even with the battery completely depleted, red light, no bars left, 0 range and about 10 km/h crawling speed, my Vectrix never went beyond '110' km/h' (A).
My normal average range is 60 kmts, pretty consistent.
Any explanation?
Thanks!
Claudio

X Vectrix
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

R
Nice sequence of the entire charging process. During the equalization the batts are charged at 3 amps until the temperature rises 3 degrees. Then the batts are cooled until the temp falls 3 degrees again. It repeats this until the EQ Ahrs is reached (cant remember off the top of my head, but about 3-4Ahrs) or the cutoff voltage is reached (the number in the center odo). Once the EQ cycle is finished cooling, the charger replaces any Ahrs used during cooling. Depending on the length of cooling this could be up to 10 minutes. Thats why in your case it only took a few minutes.
Because of HW limitations on the charger, the minimum output is 1 amp. This is the 1A you see using the old SW during the cooling periods. It was done this way so as to not use battery power during cooling. The new SW just shuts off the charger and runs the fans from the battery so this extra 1A isnt flowing thru the batts. This is why at the end of the charge you see the 10A for a few minutes with new SW.
BTW...the fuel gauge is in AHrs
BTW2...yes Andy the EQ will be repeated if it does not complete.

Mik
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

X Vectrix wrote:

...
...
This is why at the end of the charge you see the 10A for a few minutes with new SW.
...
...

Is this true? Seems very strange!

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X Vectrix
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

No, I lied.

AndY1
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Mik wrote:
X Vectrix wrote:

...
...
This is why at the end of the charge you see the 10A for a few minutes with new SW.
...
...

Is this true? Seems very strange!

Take a good look at the photos and description at the beginning of this thread towards the end of the charging process. It's well documented there.

R
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Thanks for your previous comment, x-vectrix. They helped a lot to understand some strange parts of the charging process.

Mik
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I guess you must mean this line:

Quote:

2- Recharge at 10Ah for 6 minutes. This recharge was programed for 6 minutes, but for some reason the system decided to turn off the charging before, despite there was 3:52 minutes remaining in the countdown. In the last image the nail is falling down.

Can anyone make the slightest sense out of this? Why on earth would anyone want to put 10A = C/3 through a just fully charged and equalized battery?

By definition that will severely heat and overcharge the cells!

It baffles me!

What am I missing?

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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

Hi Mik,

I just thought that I would put your mind at ease.

You are not missing anything, you are just thinking correctly.

The sole reason that the Vectrix charger is determined to vandalise the battery, is that the 'Firmware' has been written by someone who deserves the title 'GROSSLY INCOMPETENT' through his / her almost total lack of knowledge concerning the principles and practice of battery management.

Just to get this all straight, The charger electronics and 'machinery' is the hardware. The software is the programme which gives the hardware it's ability to do the job (i.e. charge the battery, run the impellors etc.). The 'Firmware' is the 'customisation' part of the software, whereby the precise patterns of charging are determined. (The upgrades may be 'software', 'firmware' or both)

What is so utterly depressing about this whole business is that the charger is perfectly capable of charging the battery without damage. It may be that the software has some failings, but it is the customisation of the software that is the most likely point of failure in this complex system.

I agree with you Mik, nobody in their right mind would push a 10 Amp (C/3) charge into an already full battery. That, of course, says it all. The 'firmware' has obviously been written by an incompetent and sadly, that incompetent, and/or his employer, refuses to (let us?) sort the problem out. Such a shame.

It is a fantastic vehicle and it is being ruined by just one (there may be more than one, of course) person's gross incompetence.

The above statements are factual and I, personally, accept full and total responsibility for them.

The laird

Mik
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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

I was thinking in similar terms, but thought I better mellow it down a bit until I'm certain.

I have never observed a Vectrix charging or running with the newer software and maybe it's a piece of misinformation.....

But it certainly seems idiotic to add a C/3 phase at the end to replace the bit of power used for cooling. One should just prolong the gentlest charge current possible for a little longer instead of this worst possible battery abuse!

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Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

That's why I always avoid that part of charging :-) the last 10A jolt, when the battery was already full and balanced for 3-4 hours with 3Amps.

It only happens once in 12 hours of riding, but I carefully monitor that special kind of charging.

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Just for reference, here's how Vectrix describes the charging phases in their Dealer Training Manual (Rev 3):

3.1 Phases of the charging
For a full recharge you need to go through a couple different phases:

  • CP Phase: The charge takes place with constant power; the intensity of the current falls from about 12 Amps (indicated on the speedometer) to lower values as the voltage of the batteries pick up, till the point when it reaches the target value indicated in the center of the dashboard (i.e: CP 151). The dashboard also displays the total duration of the charge.

ATTENTION: While the scooter is charging with the ignition key in the “ON” position, the central dashboard displays “CP000". It’s not a malfunction. The charging should be carried out when the scooter is off

ATTENTION: It may happen that the needle of the speedometer fluctuates around the value of 11/12Ampère; it's caused only by the low-voltage of the batteries

  • TR phase: It is a transitional phase in which only the plenum fans are operating to cool the batteries. A countdown indicates the duration of the TR
  • CC phase: It works at constant current; the intensity is 3 Amps, clearly visible on the speedometer

ATTENTION: The intensity MUST always be at 3 Amps, absolutely no more than this value, and any other value indicated on the speedometer should be reported to the Vectrix Service Team immediately.

  • EC phase: This is the last phase; the one that ends the charging; the intensity is at 1,5 Amps and in this case is only used to activate the cooling fans. The EC phase lasts for 1 hour.

AndY1
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Magendanz wrote:
  • EC phase: This is the last phase; the one that ends the charging; the intensity is at 1,5 Amps and in this case is only used to activate the cooling fans. The EC phase lasts for 1 hour.
  • In my observation, that was the case with the pre-october 2008 software.
    I noticed, that this isn't the case with the new software; or it may just be, that my battery temperature never exceeded 24°C since I got my bike back from the dealer (with a new battery and software) and that's why even battery fans were not working at EC phase. It looked shut down, and could see, that it is in EC mode only, if I turned on the bike with the bike still plugged in.

    X Vectrix
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    Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

    Mag
    That explanation is for the old SW, and must be taken with a grain a salt, b/c it was written by non-engineers. Even with the new SW there are several similar phases, CP maintains a constant 1500W for approximately 90% of the charge. The voltage in the middle display is just the maximum voltage the charger would allow for the current temperature...its not the target voltage. The battery is then allowed to relax and cool during TR (transition). During this time the fan is powered by the batteries (old SW used AC, which had the drawback of pumping 1.5A into battery also) This is followed by CC (constant current) at 3A, the recommended minimum current by the bat manufacturer, up to 100% (I'm using % because everyones bat may be slightly different in capacity). During all phases there are potential cutoffs that are monitored (voltage, temp etc). If any are reached then the charge is halted and what follows is dependent on what terminated the charge (lots of scenarios). After the CC phase the cooling fans continue to run for about an hour. Again it depends on the parameters but under normal charge termination it runs for an hour to cool the batts. This can remove up to 1Ahr which is replenished by the 10A for a few minutes.
    If needed the charger then performs an equalization which attempts to add another 3-4 Ahrs at 3A as recommended by manufacturer. During this time the temp is only allowed to rise 3 degrees before the current is switched off. Cooling fans are run off batteries until the temp drops 3 degrees. This cycle is repeated until done. If the charger is unplugged it will attempt this again later depending on how far it got.
    BTW.. there is only one code set running the charger. You can call it whatever you want but code is generally referred to as "firmware" if the code resides on the processor (embedded code). "Software" generally refers to code that resides on a disk or something and is loaded to the processor during runtime (when the processor needs it). So technically speaking the charger uses firmware, but I doubt anyone would shoot you if you called it "software".

    AndY1
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    Re: Vectrix's Recharging process - add your's

    Ok, running battery fans for 1 hour will consume 1Ah, and charging 10A for 6 minutes will charge 1Ah, but charging the battery already almost full with 10Amps is a little to much.
    Why not just charge that missing 1Ah with 3A for 20 minutes? It's much easier for the battery and if one has to wait 4 hours for equalizing, another 14 minutes added won't make much difference.

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