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Series cell or multiple neutrals?
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #1
Series cell or multiple neutrals?
Hi all. Now, as you get a little more understanding of things more questions arise....

We are all told that a series cell works best because it allows maximum use of the available voltage with minimal heat. But, what is the difference between the two following:

+nnnnnnnnnn- (ie. one single cell - all sealed as commonly suggested)
and
+n-....+n-....+n-....+n- (4 cells in series with partitions between each cell).

There are the same number of plates, but with no partitions in the first example. The current still has to pass across all the plates whether a single cell or a series, so what's the difference?

I think that there is, because I have tried the first example and got very little production. (But, I admit I didn't go very concentrated on the electrolyte in my test, so it might have worked better with more lye.)

Steve.
07-16-2008 08:29 PM
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johnh Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
You haven't actually got the same number of active plates there. in the first example you have 10 neutrals that are working on two sides this would be the same as 11 cells in series with no neutral plates.
In the second example you have only 4 plates working on two sides, this would give the same result as 8 cells in series.

If you are using 12 volts the first example will give very little production as there is only 1.1Volt across each plate.
You have 1.5 volts across each plate in the second example so should have much better production.
To get optimum production from any cell with neutral plates you must have them tight fitting in the case, or seal them around the edges as much as possible to stop current leaking past the plates.
John
07-17-2008 05:11 AM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
johnh Wrote:You haven't actually got the same number of active plates there. in the first example you have 10 neutrals that are working on two sides this would be the same as 11 cells in series with no neutral plates.
In the second example you have only 4 plates working on two sides, this would give the same result as 8 cells in series.

If you are using 12 volts the first example will give very little production as there is only 1.1Volt across each plate.
You have 1.5 volts across each plate in the second example so should have much better production.
To get optimum production from any cell with neutral plates you must have them tight fitting in the case, or seal them around the edges as much as possible to stop current leaking past the plates.
John

I can confirm that the production from the first example is very low, and the production of the second is much better. But what I am trying to get my head around is why. I know with a direct connection the current can flow easier, but the current flows through the electrolyte anyway, so what's the difference.

I am trying to understand the WHY of it, not just what works.

What I am thinking is that the plates that are directly connected actually act as 1 plate (either + or-). I am wondering why the smack cell works better than if the non active plates are all 'floating' and not connected.

For instance, If I have a simple +- cell, and I have 6 cells in series,I get 2v across each cell = 12v. But if I put a N in the middle of each cell, my understanding is that now I have 2 cells in each with 4v across the 3 plates (2 cells x 2v). So if I have 3 cells with the three plates each, my totall voltage drop is 12v (3 x 4v) Is that correct, or if not, what am I missing?

I get different opinions from different people on how to calculate the voltage drop when N plates are included.

I know that with N plates the cells must be fully sealed etc.
07-17-2008 04:03 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
johnh Wrote:You haven't actually got the same number of active plates there. in the first example you have 10 neutrals that are working on two sides this would be the same as 11 cells in series with no neutral plates.
In the second example you have only 4 plates working on two sides, this would give the same result as 8 cells in series.

If you are using 12 volts the first example will give very little production as there is only 1.1Volt across each plate.
You have 1.5 volts across each plate in the second example so should have much better production.
To get optimum production from any cell with neutral plates you must have them tight fitting in the case, or seal them around the edges as much as possible to stop current leaking past the plates.
John

To make my question clearer, do we calculate voltage drop across the plates or across the cells (I call a 'cell' a gap across 2 plates)?

Does a 3 plate cell draw 6 volts or 4? And does a 3 plate cell with all 'active' plates (+-+) differ from a cell with a N instead of an active (+N-). I can't seem to get a clear explanation about this.
07-17-2008 04:12 PM
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colchiro Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
Maybe this thread will answer your questions. Make sure you check out my second link.

Rick

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07-17-2008 04:38 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
colchiro Wrote:Maybe this thread will answer your questions. Make sure you check out my second link.

Not really. You offered that link before, and it is useful, but it doesn't really answer my questions. Eg. what's the difference between a +-+ cell and a +n- cell in production and voltage? In both cases you have the centre plate working both sides, and you have 2 cells which should be a voltage drop of 4v in both cases. The only difference I can make out is that in the first example there is no need to seal the cell, but in the second there is.

The reason is that I saw a video on youtube from a guy talking about that issue, and he is convinced that neutral plates don't do anything different if you have the same number of plates.

Am I making sense? Any answers?
07-17-2008 07:03 PM
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PanamaRik Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
It's a while since I did any cells with neutral plates, but as far as I remember, I needed to have neutral plates in pairs to make up the complete unit. +N- seems wrong as the center N plate will be as confused as I am regarding its polarity. +NN- effectively makes 3 cells in series @ 4v per cell. The 2 N plates take on the opposite polarity to the adjacent powered plate through the electrolyte and create a 3rd cell between them. Just my thoughts, always learning.

The biggest problem with this design, which is similar to the smacks design, is the fact that current can pass through the electrolyte around the individual cells, creating heat and wasting amps. Hence the suggestion to enclose the plate block as far as possible while allowing enough electrolyte to flow into the space between plates and gas to escape. The smacks design attempts to minimise the stray current by using larger spaces between the productive cells at the cost of extra SS due to the fact that only one side of each plate is actually producing gas.

PanamaRik

stevekos7 Wrote:
johnh Wrote:You haven't actually got the same number of active plates there. in the first example you have 10 neutrals that are working on two sides this would be the same as 11 cells in series with no neutral plates.
In the second example you have only 4 plates working on two sides, this would give the same result as 8 cells in series.

If you are using 12 volts the first example will give very little production as there is only 1.1Volt across each plate.
You have 1.5 volts across each plate in the second example so should have much better production.
To get optimum production from any cell with neutral plates you must have them tight fitting in the case, or seal them around the edges as much as possible to stop current leaking past the plates.
John

To make my question clearer, do we calculate voltage drop across the plates or across the cells (I call a 'cell' a gap across 2 plates)?

Does a 3 plate cell draw 6 volts or 4? And does a 3 plate cell with all 'active' plates (+-+) differ from a cell with a N instead of an active (+N-). I can't seem to get a clear explanation about this.

Drop by my site at http://gassaver.panamacentric.com and say 'Hi' Rik
07-17-2008 07:06 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
PanamaRik Wrote:It's a while since I did any cells with neutral plates, but as far as I remember, I needed to have neutral plates in pairs to make up the complete unit. +N- seems wrong as the center N plate will be as confused as I am regarding its polarity. +NN- effectively makes 3 cells in series @ 4v per cell. The 2 N plates take on the opposite polarity to the adjacent powered plate through the electrolyte and create a 3rd cell between them. Just my thoughts, always learning.

The biggest problem with this design, which is similar to the smacks design, is the fact that current can pass through the electrolyte around the individual cells, creating heat and wasting amps. Hence the suggestion to enclose the plate block as far as possible while allowing enough electrolyte to flow into the space between plates and gas to escape. The smacks design attempts to minimise the stray current by using larger spaces between the productive cells at the cost of extra SS due to the fact that only one side of each plate is actually producing gas.

PanamaRik

stevekos7 Wrote:
johnh Wrote:You haven't actually got the same number of active plates there. in the first example you have 10 neutrals that are working on two sides this would be the same as 11 cells in series with no neutral plates.
In the second example you have only 4 plates working on two sides, this would give the same result as 8 cells in series.

If you are using 12 volts the first example will give very little production as there is only 1.1Volt across each plate.
You have 1.5 volts across each plate in the second example so should have much better production.
To get optimum production from any cell with neutral plates you must have them tight fitting in the case, or seal them around the edges as much as possible to stop current leaking past the plates.
John

To make my question clearer, do we calculate voltage drop across the plates or across the cells (I call a 'cell' a gap across 2 plates)?

Does a 3 plate cell draw 6 volts or 4? And does a 3 plate cell with all 'active' plates (+-+) differ from a cell with a N instead of an active (+N-). I can't seem to get a clear explanation about this.

I thought that a single neutral plate between + and - would be + on one side and - on the other. Might affect production a bit, or might not produce at all, just absorb current. This is what I am trying to nail down. So many of us (me included) just do what someone says to do without really understanding why. I'm past that now, and want to UNDERSTAND how the process works, so I can make improvements with results I can predict with some accuracy.

I know I'm banging on about this a bit but it's important to me.
07-17-2008 07:19 PM
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colchiro Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
Since you need at least 4 volts to get decent output on (+ n -), let's assume that.

Using (+ n -), this cell has 2 volts from neutral to each charged plate, making it run cooler and close to optimal. Primarily the pos and neg plates produce gas.

Using (+ - +), this cell has 4 volts from pos to neg and is actually 2 cells in parallel, since the pos plates are connected to the same power source. Given the same electrolyte strength, this cell would draw more amps and produce more gas, but will run warmer and since anything more than 2 volts is wasted as heat, will not be as efficient. The problem with this design, if both cells are producing the same LPM, this cell will likely run 1.5 to 2 times more current.

Make more sense?

Rick

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07-17-2008 07:19 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Series cell or multiple neutrals?
colchiro Wrote:Since you need at least 4 volts to get decent output on (+ n -), let's assume that.

Using (+ n -), this cell has 2 volts from neutral to each charged plate, making it run cooler and close to optimal. Primarily the pos and neg plates produce gas.

Using (+ - +), this cell has 4 volts from pos to neg and is actually 2 cells in parallel, since the pos plates are connected to the same power source. Given the same electrolyte strength, this cell would draw more amps and produce more gas, but will run warmer and since anything more than 2 volts is wasted as heat, will not be as efficient. The problem with this design, if both cells are producing the same LPM, this cell will likely run 1.5 to 2 times more current.

Make more sense?

Thank you Rick! That makes sense.

Obviously there is some kind of optimum number of neutrals, that will allow for a good production rate at a sensible solution strength. I assume that solution strength is the key where more neutrals are present, and number of cells is the key where no neutrals are present?

I also assume that this is why series cells need higher electrolyte solutions, but produce better and run cooler.

I will go ahead and build my 3 cell series generator with 3 x +n- cells.

I was going to build a 3 x (+nn-) config, but based on what you are saying these would be less efficient because the extra n plates would reduce the voltage to below optimum, requiring very high solution to boost the amps.

Actually it seems that watts (v x amps) are the key to production.

Does that make sense?
07-17-2008 07:44 PM
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