When choosing a battery for a robot, should you use a LiPo or LiFePo?
For LiFePo, the pros:
- can deliver higher sustained amps
- many are built to be drop-in replacements for lead-acid batteries and can use the same charger
- enormously expensive (about $1/watt*hour/kg)
- lower energy density than LiPo (around 110 watt*hour/kg)
For LiPo batteries, the pros:
- cheaper (about $0.2/watt*hour/kg)
- over twice the energy density than LiFePo (around 250 watt*hour/kg)
- more complicated and unsafe to charge (see videos of LiPos catching on fire)
- most can't safely deliver high amps
Is there anything I'm missing? I see LiFePo batteries used on a lot of larger platforms, probably due to the higher continuous amp rating. I see Ebay flooded with tons of cheap high-capacity Chinese LiPos, but almost none of them have documentation, which probably means they're junk.
When should I use LiFePo vs LiPo?