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I dont know much about electrical systems, so I would like to pose a question. Could the Insight be used to power regular plug-in appliances? If the IMA battery is 144v and wall outlets are 120v(if that is correct), it seems that you could power small appliances from the IMA battery; possibly a blender for tailgating, a small tv, or a light. I know about power inverters that plug into the cig. lighter, but that would just gobble up the power in the 12v battery if the Insight was not running, correct? I have heard that the IMA battery is not allowed to drain below 20% or above 80% to help with extending the life of the battery. I would not want to negate that feature in trying something like this. Please let me know where I made incorrect assumptions and share your ideas or concerns. Thanks.
 

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The _very_ important consideration of limiting the draw-dowm of the pack is the biggest problem. The limits are controlled by the MCM or BCM via the current sensors from the IMA motor. Taking power directly out of the pack must be done such that these components are "aware" of the draw and will shut down the current at the battery life saving limits. Else you _will_ severely shorten the IMA batteries life.

There are 2 others that come to mind:

1) Its DC not AC, the two are not usually compatible for most appliances, although an incandescent bulb "likes" DC better.

2) The capacity of the pack if drained from 100% to 0% will light a 120W light bulb for 6.5 hours +- (actually a fraction more but its late and im too tired to do the math) P (power in watts) = I (current in Amps) * E (Electromotive force (volts)). Limiting the available power to extend battery life further reduces this value by 60% = 3.9 hours.

Many other appliances have a much higher drain than a light bulb so you see the futility in going to the trouble. There's really not much power back there!

HTH! :)
 

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Just put in a full sized 12 volt battery and run an inverter off it. You won't void your warranty, destroy your IMA battery, or electrocute yourself messing around with 144 volts DC. DC is more dangerous than AC. You won't feel the DC until it is too late and your hand has gone into a death grip around the wire. (Of course now that you are warned it is less likely to happen.) A 80 amp x 12 volt car battery holds as much energy as the IMA battery. It just won't efficiently deliver a 12 Kilowatt surge like the IMA! Then again if you need to power a carbon dioxide cutting laser or a rail gun for dispatching aggresive SUVs, The IMA battery is the right choice. :twisted:

Aw come on, just kidding, Mom drives a CRV. :wink:
 

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You are correct in regard to a large capacity 12v battery having a larger equivalent energy capacity vs. the IMA pack.

In regard to high voltage and safety I'd like to expand and clarify your statements so those reading will have the best information AFAIK to protect themselves.

There is basically no difference in the level of danger between AC & DC voltage.

Voltage ranges from 6 - 600v _tend_ to be the most dangerous because of the relationship if voltage and resistance. The body has a natural resistance in ohms and voltages below 6v _tend_ not to have enough "punch" to deliver a significant enough flow of current.

Voltages above 600v _tend_ to cause involuntary muscle reaction and release you from the source (assuming its something you've grabbed with your hand).

Voltages above 100,000v arc and follow you across the room regardless of any muscle contraction and your literally cooked.

The path that the current takes through the body is the most significant factor in regard to your arrival at the Pearly Gates. Paths across the chest have a much greater ability to cause the heart to go into v-fib (ventricular fibrillation), an irregular beat that pumps little or no blood through the body.

Voltages passing through the body tend to interfere with the body's own "electrical" system and block the ability to control muscles. The speed of our body's electro-chemical system is _much_ slower than electricity in a conductor therefore there is _no_ time available to react to a "sensed" electrical shock and disconnect from it.

HTH! :)
 

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Just a few notes:

Yes, you could get an SLA battery with the equivalent energy of the IMA battery, but it would likely weigh 60 lbs. :shock: (you would need ~78 [email protected]). The size you need would depend on how much energy you need.

If you decide to tap the 12V battery, you should consider that the Insight wiring has a limited current rating, so depending on the appliance you would like to use, you may need to supplement the existing wiring and add a separate fuse. I think the cigarette lighter will blow its fuse at around 15A, or [email protected]

You should also consider a deep-cycle battery or equivalent, since it will be better able to handle the deep discharges you are suggesting. Standard automotive SLI batteries will have a very short life if they are deep-cycled.

As was suggested, you will need an inverter to convert 12V DC to 120V AC for many applications. The inverter will waste a certain amount of energy dependent on its efficiency; this loss must be accounted for when sizing the wiring.

Given the nature of your question, I would not recommend going anywhere near the 144V IMA battery or mains. This is potentially dangerous unless you know what you are doing.
 

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Yes, an 80 amp hour battery will be heavy but since you will take out the OEM it will probably only add 30 pounds. The inverter and wiring would add about 5 more pounds.

I had the impression that voltages under 50 volts were safe due to the body's resistance, but that is decades old info so don't quote me on that. I also heard that the worst voltage was around 600 volts. (about what the new Prius is running). DC or AC are equally lethal but my point was that you might feel the buzz of AC current soon enough to let go. Apparently contact from a hand to the foot on the opposite side is the worst case, but I won't try it out to confirm that. :wink:

If you are only going to use the inverter occasionally for relatively light duty then you should be able to mod the car with an inverter and larger battery fairly simply.

Don't use the IMA battery! :shock:
 
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