NiCad Charger with temp control

Posted on Jun 7, 2012

One way to charge Ni-Cad batteries rapidly without abuse is to measure cell temperature and taper the charge accordingly. The circuit uses a thermocouple for this function. A second thermocouple nulls out the effects of ambient temperature. The temperature difference between the two thermocouples determines the voltage which appears at the amplifier's positive input. As battery temperature rises, this small negative voltage (1°C difference between the thermocouples equals 40 ??) becomes larger.

NiCad Charger with temp control
Click here to download the full size of the above Circuit.

The amplifier, operating at a gain of 4300, gradually reduces the current through the battery to maintain its inputs at balance. The battery charges at a high rate until heating occurs and the circuit then tapers the charge. The values given in the circuit limit the battery surface temperature rise over ambient to about 5°C.

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