Battery Run-times?

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby a4refillpad » February 4th, 2013, 7:47 pm

vic7767 wrote:Yes, 75 minute run was using the rev 64 board running 3.0. It was the 4500 mAH pack that I was REALLY expecting much longer run times. But as Neato has posted within the forum, the Neato firmware performs calculations based on usage measurements and not just battery voltage. Therefore the run times I expected were less due to internal processes unknown to us.


Okay, so from what this sounds like. The 4500mAH pack in an older rev113 bot running 2.6 you would expect to run significantly longer. In the rev 64 with 3.0 it ran for 75mins. Now on the same bot with 3.1 running for an even shorter 60mins. Is this evidence that neato are shortening the runtime on each successive firmware?

I've seen some people post that they've seen no difference from 2.6 to 3.1 and I personally saw no difference between 3.0 to 3.1. Very confused here as to what's going on to be honest now. :?
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » February 4th, 2013, 7:51 pm

I'm confused too. So simple question, would 4500's make my rev113, 2.6 bot get longer run times?
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » February 4th, 2013, 8:35 pm

I custom build 4500 mAH packs for Neato, Scooba, and Roomba. Send me a PM, or email, or use the contact me form on my websites for details and pricing.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby a4refillpad » February 4th, 2013, 8:38 pm

Vic in another thread you posted the below:
vic7767 wrote:I replaced the stock battery pair with a 4500 mAH mod. The run times varied from 25 minutes to 55 minutes. Still had 14.5 to 15 vdc when deciding to return to base. There seem to be two issues with the short run times some owners experienced. One is the faulty battery packs. The other evidently is a firmware change within 3.0

Here you state that with v3.0 fw you experienced 25-55mins not 75mins. Seeing that you are now seeing 60mins with v3.1 it appears that v3.1 is behaving much the same as the v3.0 fw before. Is this correct? Just want to clarify before we start scaring people off from upgrading from 3.0 to 3.1 for fear of reducing their runtimes further.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » February 4th, 2013, 8:51 pm

The earlier posting is correct, however I also have had up to a 75 minute run during 3.0. I have not been able to identify what has created the different run times but I don't suspect they are any shorter on 3.1. The Neato is going in different running patterns during every mission since objects change location thanks to helpful Boston terriers. When time permits I do plan to disassemble the XV-21 (3.1) Neato and perform current measurements on all the motors then do the same to an XV-11 (pre 3.0)
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby a4refillpad » February 4th, 2013, 9:22 pm

I have no evidence to directly prove this but I get the impression that the newer neato has better suction than my older neato. If this is real (not me imagining it) could that be a reason for shorter runtimes? I've not seen neato advertise this anywhere though. The reason I thought this was the case is that I've noticed the xv25 suck in debris a good inch away from the front of the intake which I've never noticed before in the older robot. Very non-scientific I know....
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » February 4th, 2013, 9:30 pm

I've noticed the same thing when using the stock filter from the pet brush kit. I think it's been mentioned that a new design of exhaust air direction and a change from 12 v to 14 volt vacuum motor was done to the XV-21 rev 64.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » February 4th, 2013, 9:48 pm

disassemble the XV-21 (3.1) Neato and perform current measurements on all the motors then do the same to an XV-11

Usb GetAnalogSensors -- "CurrentInmA" third from bottom.
Separate motors measurable subtracting baseline from running each; fan has its own line item.
Long cable for running the wheels; same filter to equalize fan. Surprising if they doubled power drain.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » February 7th, 2013, 1:26 pm

So i think I've narrowed it down to charger issue. I charged my batteries with an external smart charger and got 60+ minutes multiple times. But when left to the dock only, I can not break the 38 minute barrier. Not sure how I can automate the process while still getting the longer run times.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » February 7th, 2013, 1:59 pm

That smart charger is more aggressive during the charging cycle than your Neato. You might consider choosing the "New Battery" menu option and see how the run times go. I'm sure Neato will cringe from that suggestion but I suspect that the charging process when using that menu option may be similar to the external smart charger.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » February 7th, 2013, 2:06 pm

I've done the "new battery" option before...more than once.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » February 7th, 2013, 4:01 pm

So, you're saying that there is no runtime improvement using the New Battery option but there is with the smart charger?
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » February 7th, 2013, 4:03 pm

Yep
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » February 8th, 2013, 8:07 pm

Problems reported by dashingemt could be affected by Neato's report about the "New Battery" option. If for any reason a shorter than normal run time occurs, Neato may record this time as a limit on future runs until the "New Battery" is entered in the menu to reset the maximum run time to it's preprogrammed normal. You may have to enter this every time a test is run which is unsuccessful.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » July 2nd, 2013, 1:22 am

Minor interest for external chargers: for male pins to fit Neato battery side connectors, female D-connector pins work well as male pins the right size. For electronics hobbyists, a controlled battery discharge circuit is shown here.
[edit] adding an interface to a stop-clock http://www.robotreviews.com/chat/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=17069 will measure battery capacity from the time to discharge and the load.
[edit] using 1% precision resistors multimeter measurement can be eliminated with a fixed setting to 12v.
schematicdischarger.jpg

discharger.jpg


Mosfet switch version
schematicdischarger2.jpg
Last edited by glnc222 on May 24th, 2017, 7:12 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby a4refillpad » July 2nd, 2013, 4:26 am

I suspect the "new battery" option does nothing extra on the charging front at all. All it potentially does is remove what it currently thinks is the current max run time of the battery so that it can stop the current job early to ensure it has enough juice to return home.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » July 2nd, 2013, 3:31 pm

I thought Neato said just that here. Reports from users of new units with initially short run times increasing with repeated use seem inconsistent with this, unless they are setting New Battery without mentioning it.

Incidentally, the difference in run times between different models or versions need not be included in the general software updates. Part of the system software can be some minimal operating system analogous to BIOS in PC's stored in a portion of the flash memory loaded only at the factory. Parameters related to the batteries can be in that section along with things specific to the hardware in different models, more system board components than the sensors and motors, as components get improved. What they actually do has not been reported and probably won't be, as it's too specific in purpose to make worthwhile hacking. Can't play angry birds on it.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby craigbla » July 3rd, 2013, 5:01 pm

I didn't know about the "new battery" option so I just let the XV-11 keep recharging - the first few runs were very short (just a few minutes) but that increased to at least 20 so the logic must be more complex or different.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » July 14th, 2013, 4:06 pm

Battery Characteristics Data For Monitoring

XV-11 Rev. 112 board 2011, software v3.1
3800mah after-market battery (marketed as 3500; Neato Robotics batteries 3200)
Maximum Run Time on Carpet 70 minutes (with beater brush)*
Battery Voltage (externally measured):
Charged:
unloaded 16.56v
.3amp load 16.46v
.6amp load 16.34v
Discharged (after 70 minutes run, return to base initiated)
unloaded 14.78v
.3amp load 14.60v
Full discharge 12v
Unused capacity: N/A (experience discharging other batteries shows this can be at least 1000mah from 14.7 to 12v, under slow discharge -- effect of discharge rate not measured)
[edit] that was based on a large battery, and a smaller one could plummet much faster, so has to be measured. Discharge curves turn sharply down at the end. Some other time.

Batteries are noticeably warm after fast recharging by Neato, but not too hot to touch, which has been observed on worn out batteries.

*area cleaned differs from run time as appears to move faster with the bristle brush; run time could be shorter but same area cleaned. Data not available.
Neato manual notes lack of carpet drag on hard floors gave 90 minutes run time this model, confirmed by users.
Run time is programmed and not increased by larger battery capacity, mainly useful for reducing wear from deep discharging.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby glnc222 » July 17th, 2013, 12:57 pm

Battery Usage

The maximum Neato run uses between 2164 and 2269mah charge of the battery charge, or 70 per cent of 3200mah capacity (60 per cent of 3800, 50 per cent of 4500mah capacity),

Measured with the electronic stop clock (http://www.robotreviews.com/chat/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=17069) and precision comparator discharge circuit above with 50 ohm and initial 317ma load over 7:30 hours for voltage to fall to the level ending Neato runs. Assuming a linear voltage discharge curve average 22690mah. Literature reports faster discharge early in cycles inplying a lower average; minimum ending load 289mh and flat curve giving minimum 2164mah, unlikely reached.

A Prius hybrid car with minimum ten year battery life is described by Toyota as never discharging below 30 per cent, now apparently same as on Neato's factory battery. This implies Neato's short one year battery life may be due to the rapid charging procedure. How fast the Prius charges is not clear; could take several hours of driving to fill up, maybe half as fast as Neato (tedious to monitor the dashboard display so much, as well as fully discharging not normally done). The cells used might be constructed with heavier duty materials than common electronics supply, unknown. (One of those Rumsfeld "known unknowns".)
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