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UL Rating of EUCs and batteries


Student4Life

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I see modern EUCs are using name-branded battery cells.  But some jurisdictions (notably NYC) in the last year are requiring micro-mobility devices to have UL certifications, and CPSC has been using stronger words.  https://www.ul.com/industries/automotive-and-mobility/micromobility-device-testing-and-certification  An earlier thread in this forum suggested the production quantities for EUCs don't justify the costs of certification.  But what is the state of affairs today-- are some of the battery packs certified?  Devices certified?  What are the risks-- Would an employer allow an EUC to be stored at a desk?  Charged at a desk?  Ridden while on duty?

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I think EUC's meet most but not all of the requirements of UL2272, with the major gaps being:

  • Environmental protection (many EUC battery packs are not sufficiently water-resistant). 
  • Temperature monitoring (many EUC battery packs do not have temperature sensors). 

Some EUC's and other self-balancing devices are certified: for example, Ninebot Mini

 

Quote

Jason McNeil

The costs for obtaining a UL2272 certification on an Electric Unicycle are considerable, approximately $38,000 directly to UL, in addition to providing 16-20 Wheels in order to be destroyed in various ways. For Inmotion they made the call, that for the time being, these costs exceeded the additional sales likely of being able to sell to marketplaces like Amazon.com. 

Keep in mind that the battery cells & standard chargers are certified, which were the causes of most incendiary hoverboard incidents.

Technically speaking, when the wheel diameter is only 6.5-10" & so low to the ground with a load of say 300lbs, the dynamic forces in order to keep this person balanced on a relatively low-powered machine overtax the design capabilities of those poor 20 battery cells. Is it any wonder they fail catastrophically? Compare this to an Electric Unicycle where the motion, & therefore the power output, is continuous, & the cell count on a decent Wheel is at least double this.  

Ebike%20Infographic%20March%202023.png

 

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Posted (edited)

Topic of battery safety is becoming a hot potato, there's a bill that's passed through congress. Can't find the specific recommendations, but I bet this going to result in the requirement of UL 2272/2849 for all new hardware entering the country. We're working on getting this done with the new Begode models & the Lynx too.   

https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-congress/house-bill/1797

Edited by Jason McNeil
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46 minutes ago, Jason McNeil said:

Topic of battery safety is becoming a hot potato, there's a bill that's passed through congress. Can't find the specific recommendations, but I bet this going to result in the requirement of UL 2272/2849 for all new hardware entering the country. We're working on getting this done with the new Begode models & the Lynx too.   

https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-congress/house-bill/1797

Okay, that's some fantastic news!

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6 hours ago, Jason McNeil said:

Topic of battery safety is becoming a hot potato, there's a bill that's passed through congress. Can't find the specific recommendations, but I bet this going to result in the requirement of UL 2272/2849 for all new hardware entering the country. We're working on getting this done with the new Begode models & the Lynx too.   

https://www.congress.gov/bill/118th-congress/house-bill/1797

That's great to hear from a safety standpoint!

I do suspect that prices will inevitably increase as well due to this costly requirement though, is that correct?

Also, because of the increased tariffs (from 25% to 100% in 2025) on li-ion batteries coming into the USA, how dramatically you predict that EUC prices will increase as a result?

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This could backfire for euc riders as those bills are aimed at ebikes and escooters. Two wheeled vehicles. As you know with eucs, certain protections lead to faceplants. 

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1 hour ago, alcatraz said:

This could backfire for euc riders as those bills are aimed at ebikes and escooters. Two wheeled vehicles. As you know with eucs, certain protections lead to faceplants. 

Isn't the V14 UL2859 certified though, without problems like these? I feel like I've seen/heard that somewhere it is

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I just saw the words "overvoltage" and "overcurrent".

If the protection requires disabling of the battery pack then faceplant. Be it overvoltage induced by hard braking, or overcurrent induced by fast acceleration.

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Posted (edited)

(UL2272 / HR1797 content merged now)

On 9/6/2023 at 9:51 AM, RagingGrandpa said:

I think EUC's meet most but not all of the requirements of UL2272, with the major gaps being:

  • Environmental protection (many EUC battery packs are not sufficiently water-resistant). 
  • Temperature monitoring (many EUC battery packs do not have temperature sensors). 

Some EUC's and other self-balancing devices are certified: for example, Ninebot Mini

 

Ebike%20Infographic%20March%202023.png

 

 

Edited by RagingGrandpa
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9 hours ago, alcatraz said:

Just to be clear. They're talking about safety of environments, not the safety of riders while riding.

A subject that deserves its own thread, for sure. But one spends more time off the unicycle than on it. And one likes a warm welcome when one arrives somewhere on the unicycle and brings it indoors. And aboard the odd train or taxi. It follows, that unicycles that wouldn't burst into flame would be more useful to more people, and sell better. Unicycles that also managed not to conk out while sailing around would experience a marketplace success that would dwarf any investment in their safety rating.

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, alcatraz said:

I just saw the words "overvoltage" and "overcurrent".

If the protection requires disabling of the battery pack then faceplant. Be it overvoltage induced by hard braking, or overcurrent induced by fast acceleration.

9 hours ago, alcatraz said:

Just to be clear. They're talking about safety of environments, not the safety of riders while riding.

We already have alarms for that.. All they need to do is add another layer of alarms. One where wheels shuts off.. And one where it warns the rider. (User would hear only one alarm. Next will be cut-off. Same thing as we already have.)

If nothing else - STOP accelerating and going that fast in first place! Where wheel can't keep up with user demand.. Or buy faster/bigger wheel..

22 minutes ago, Toad said:

A subject that deserves its own thread, for sure. But one spends more time off the unicycle than on it. And one likes a warm welcome when one arrives somewhere on the unicycle and brings it indoors. And aboard the odd train or taxi. It follows, that unicycles that wouldn't burst into flame would be more useful to more people, and sell better. Unicycles that also managed not to conk out while sailing around would experience a marketplace success that would dwarf any investment in their safety rating.

YES! I personally haven't had a single problem going on bus/train/shops over 3 years.. But still would like safer battery. Just in case of fire..

Edited by Funky
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, alcatraz said:

The certification might deem alarms inadequate and require disabling the pack. 

Alarm is for the rider safety. (The first alarm..) Second point is where it disables the pack. Same thing as speed alarms.. First we hear said alarm, followed by cut-out if user keeps ignoring them and speeding up..

Alarm start happening when voltage rises to concrete number.. But we still have 10-20% headroom. (Numbers just out of my head.)

Instead of speed cut-out, now we will get voltage cut-out also. :D Respect wheel and it's alarms and you will have ZERO problems. In 3 years i have heard zero alarms, simply for fact that i don't overburden my wheel and know it's limits.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, alcatraz said:

The laws aren't written by riders. I don't expect it to be logical and reasonable. 

True.

I don't even care for them. I'm doing my own thing. :D They can make them, doesn't mean people will start to follow them suddenly. Imagine suddenly there is law saying you can't leave house past 10'o clock... Duck that. Same for EUC's suddenly getting banned - Duck that. I'm gonna keep riding. I don't need 50lbs paper weight. Same for pev's suddenly getting banned on public transport - nope. I will continue to bring it onboard. As people have been doing it for decades!

Dumb/Stupid laws needs to be ignored.

Manufacturers need to make them safer in first place! So people get on with the time and start accepting small electric transports of all kind. PEV's of all kind is the future..

Edited by Funky
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On 9/3/2023 at 12:20 PM, Student4Life said:

I see modern EUCs are using name-branded battery cells.  But some jurisdictions (notably NYC) in the last year are requiring micro-mobility devices to have UL certifications, and CPSC has been using stronger words.  https://www.ul.com/industries/automotive-and-mobility/micromobility-device-testing-and-certification  An earlier thread in this forum suggested the production quantities for EUCs don't justify the costs of certification.  But what is the state of affairs today-- are some of the battery packs certified?  Devices certified?  What are the risks-- Would an employer allow an EUC to be stored at a desk?  Charged at a desk?  Ridden while on duty?

Begode will not be able to easily adapt. 

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7 minutes ago, Jason McNeil said:

So.... I just got off the phone with a UL Engineer to go over some of the details of the upcoming legislation & the impact this will have to this Wheels. He tells me that this is going to effect ALL PEV equipment, including Wheels, Scooters, eBikes, Hoverboards, etc, for anything either being made, or imported into the US will require the 2272/2849 certification, enforced through CBP. Exact time for implementation has not yet been established, until it passes the senate vote.

As the costs are in the region of $30k/per product + $10k/year in annual maintenance & periodic inspections at the site of production. This is going to inevitably see a reduction in the number of models if circulation (there will be grandfather clause for current stock), & will likely see costs increase by about $50/Wheel, assuming volumes of ~1,000 Wheels sold over a 1-2 years period.

For phase 1, we've had Begode complete a compliance report on the Falcon & 134V packs (Master, EX30, Blitz), the Lynx is in process too, & moving forward with the full certification program on these models this week. The whole process takes between 2-3 months, provided there's no significant hardware engineering changes discovered while under validation. It's been nearly a decade since first contacting UL for certifying Wheels, despite best efforts, the manufacturers didn't regard this as being a priority, but with this new legislation, it's no long optional, suppliers will be compelled to finally get this certification, regardless of whatever the perceived value is of making the products safer—if nothing else, there will be greater attention in applying standardization/best practice in electronics safety.  

https://drive.google.com/file/d/16sG7YejIxQKj2-0ZrNRzmtpG_jxN25RR/view?usp=sharing

Can't wait to see someone disassembling Falcon battery. :) 50$ isn't even that much.. Heck even 100$ would be fine.

Quick question - that IP67 is only for battery or for everything? Motor.. Motherboard..? (Most likely for all wheel, at least i would think..)

If for all - i guess motor will have some kind seals on bearings and motor covers are silicone shut?

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The US has no euc manufacturer. I wonder if it provides an open invitation to the other manufacturers to use anti competitive conditions and language in the bill. If noone defends EUCs when designing it, what stops the major players from greenlighting themselves and blocking the rest? *in safety speak* *for our well being* yada yada.

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Posted (edited)

At the very least, they can try to raise prices of eucs as much as possible to provide themselves with an advantage. Whatever player holds the greatest market share (not so) surprisingly won't have their purchase prices raised.

Edited by alcatraz
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Also, are we from here and now going to credit the bill to any reduction in incidents? I believe the trend was already going down if we account for the increase in electric vehicles. 

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