Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

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KnightExemplar
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Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby KnightExemplar » Tue Jan 24, 2017 5:31 pm UTC

https://news.samsung.com/global/infogra ... discovered

Spoiler:
Image


Seems like a legit manufacturing error... twice. The first battery would short the electrodes over time... while the second battery would be punctured over time. Both seemed to be because of the high-amounts of deflection (aka: your ass sitting on the phone) that was beyond expectations and not tested for.

In both cases, a short-circuit would erupt, eventually causing a fire... as is common with any Lithium-Ion technology.

So the batteries were functioning when they left the factories. Only after being used in the real-world (with thinner-and-thinner phones that offered less-and-less protection for the battery) would they break, and only after weeks of use. Still, Samsung seems to be taking responsibility here and are doing a good job at being transparent about the issue. I'd say I'm personally impressed with their explanation and how they handled this crisis.

I think this event should serve as a warning to all other manufacturers: the "thinness" of phones are reaching practical limits. The phones are now flexing significantly under standard use, and that is going to cause some absurd edge-cases moving forward.
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pogrmman
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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby pogrmman » Thu Jan 26, 2017 3:30 am UTC

That's really interesting that it's due to the thinness of the phones.

I wonder if they could make a more structurally sound thin phone by sacrificing some weight. It seems like that could help with the problem.

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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby Thesh » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:03 am UTC

Maybe ceramic would be a good option.
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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby Dauric » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:21 am UTC

pogrmman wrote:That's really interesting that it's due to the thinness of the phones.

I wonder if they could make a more structurally sound thin phone by sacrificing some weight. It seems like that could help with the problem.


Not quite sure what you mean there by sacrificing weight? The problem is the phone doesn't have the structural integrity to resist flexing in normal use (IE: being put in a back pocket and sat on), they're not collapsing under their own mass.

To solve that issue requires advances in material sciences, either to create materials that can retain structural integrity at these boundary-pushing thinness, -or- materials in the case, screen and battery that are designed to flex (such as Fujitsu's "Fabric PC" concept).
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KnightExemplar
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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:43 am UTC

Dauric wrote:-or- materials in the case, screen and battery that are designed to flex (such as Fujitsu's "Fabric PC" concept).


Considering that screens aren't literally exploding, I don't think that screens are the major issue. Batteries need to be designed to flex now, due to the thinness of phones. The PCBs of phones also need to be more flexible.

http://ifixit.org/blog/8309/iphone-6-pl ... uch-death/

The iPhone 6 and 6s seems to break due to the flexing over time. In this case, it looks like one of the connectors on the PCB (that handles touch-screen stuff) wears out as the phone flexes back and forth.

The thing about rigidity: it grows with the cube of the thickness. Cut thickness by 1/2, and rigidity will be cut by 1/8th. You can't get around this basic physical fact. So in the best case, if you somehow found a material that was 2x more rigid, you can only afford to make phones 20% thinner.

EDIT: Well, the cube of the thickness is related to the spring constant, while the square of the thickness is related to deflection. I guess the "square law" is more relevant in this case, since we are trying to determine how much internal components will deflect when a load is applied.
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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby KittenKaboodle » Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:24 am UTC

[quote="KnightExemplar] if you somehow found a material that was 2x more rigid[/quote]

Going to steel instead of aluminum gets you 3x, but as pogrmman mentions there would be a weight penalty, about 3x the mass for the frame (however the frame is only some fraction of the total, so the overall mass of the phone would not increase as much)

But that is just half assed, the obvious solution is single crystal diamond, which would also give the most scratch resistant screens possible. Might be a bit expensive for Samsung, but I expect to see the Trump Tweeting from a Diamond I-phone any day now.

Se also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Diamond_Age

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Re: Samsung publishes Galaxy "Explosive battery" report

Postby ObsessoMom » Fri Jan 27, 2017 5:41 am UTC

KittenKaboodle wrote:But that is just half assed


I see what you did there.


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