Drone Batteries: Everything You Need To Know
December 6, 2023
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Drone Batteries: Everything You Need To Know

Drone Batteries: Everything You Need To Know

As the use of drones becomes increasingly popular, so have the conversations regarding their components. Drone batteries are an essential component of any drone and are a hot topic among drone pilots who want their drones to be up in the air for as long as possible. Knowing what different batteries have to offer and how to take care of them can help you make the most of your flights. Read on for our comprehensive guide to drone batteries.

Drone batteries are rechargeable batteries that power drones. They are usually made of Lithium Polymer (LiPo) or Lithium-ion Polymer (Li-ion) and come in different sizes and capacities. Drone batteries are essential for longer flight times, and they pose a potential fire hazard if not handled properly. Therefore, it’s important to know the ins and outs of your drone batteries to get the most out of them.

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Types of Drone Batteries:

The kind of batteries your drone uses can play an important role in how your drone functions including the time they take to charge between uses as well as the rate of discharge. The most used types of drone batteries are Nickel Cadmium (NiCad), Lithium polymer (LiPo), and Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. You may also see brand specific batteries.

  • Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cd)

    You may see nickel cadmium batteries on older models of drones. Although they are not commonly used anymore, it’s important to know of their existence. Ni-Cd batteries can store a significant amount of energy relative to their size and weight. Ni-Cd batteries are also known for their durability and ability to withstand extreme temperatures. However, they are known to gradually lose their ability to hold a charge (the “memory effect”) and there are various environmental concerns regarding their disposal.

  • Lithium-ion (Li-ion)

    Lithium-ion batteries are smaller in size the Ni-Cd batteries and are environmentally safer too. A huge advantage is that they do not suffer from the memory effect that Ni-Cd batteries suffer from.

  • Lithium polymer (LiPo)

    LiPo batteries are made of a polymer electrolyte, which makes them more flexible and lighter than Li-ion batteries. They can also store more energy than Li-ion batteries. This makes them currently the most popularly used batteries in drones.

  • Brand Specific BatteriesSome

    drone brands, like DJI for example, make batteries that are only compatible with their brand. Trying to use other batteries than those made specifically for their drones can damage your drone – if they even work. Luckily though, the batteries made for DJI drones can be used across a variety of their models, so you do have flexibility there.

Considerations While Choosing a Drone Battery

There are several factors to consider while choosing a drone battery that can affect your drone’s performance. Remember to always read manufacturer instructions before purchasing additional batteries so you make the best choices for your drone.

  • Voltage

    The voltage of your drone battery directly correlates to the amount of power your drone motor produces. While batteries with higher voltage produce more power, they are also heavier. Similarly, you can connect batteries in series to increase power, but this also increases weight which can affect flight time. Your motor thrust data table can help compare your drone motor efficiency with battery voltage.

  • Capacity

    Capacity is another important factor to consider when choosing a drone battery. It refers to how much energy a battery can store and is measured in milliampere-hours (mAh). The higher the capacity, the longer your drone can fly.

  • Size and Weight

    The size and weight of your battery affects your flight time. Choose batteries that work with the takeoff weight of your drone with the highest capacity so that your flight time can be maximized.

  • Discharge Rating

    Discharge rating refers to how fast a battery can discharge its energy safely. Also known as the C-rating, it lets you know how much current a battery can continuously supply for its given charge cycle. The higher the C- rating, the better the performance.

Storage and Safety

Storing your drone battery correctly is also crucial for its longevity.

  1. Always use the manufacturer’s recommended charger.
  2. Never leave your charging battery unattended.
  3. Avoid overcharging or undercharging your battery.
  4. Store your battery in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight or heat sources.
  5. Avoid storing your battery at full charge or empty charge for extended periods.
  6. Dispose of damaged batteries safely.
  7. Coastal Drone offers a range of drone pilot training courses – from basic to advanced that will help you make the most of your drones’ capabilities. Sign up today!

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