IPC Will Move on Battery Standards


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BANNOCKBURN, Ill. The IPC Association Connecting Electronics Industries announced that the OEM Critical Components Committee will hold a technical summit meeting to develop standards for lithium-ion batteries. The committee was scheduled to meet about power conversion standards prior to batteries, but will give lithium-ion standards top priority in light of Dell's major consumer recall.

The committee includes members from Dell, Lenovo, and other computer manufacturers. At this time, the IPC does not know if representatives from Sony who manufactured the defective batteries that caused Dell laptop fires will attend, according to Kim Sterling, vice president of communications, IPC. Standardization will address operation and safety issues, and will "define necessary manufacturing and design parameters," explained Sterling. OEMs in attendance, as well as industry suppliers and customers, are expected to implement the voluntary standards.

"The industry does not appear to have any widely-accepted standards," said Sterling, adding that a "consensus document created by industry technical experts" should promote fair and useable production specifications for the batteries. Experts claim that the Dell batteries were incorrectly manufactured, creating a weakness in the protective material that shields anodes from cathodes. The IPC has not undertaken any analysis of the batteries in question.

The summit will take place in San Jose, Calif., in mid-September. Dates for meetings regarding power conversion standards, which were delayed because of accelerated efforts to standardize lithium-ion processes, were not yet announced. Visit the IPC's website for more information.

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