To the surprise of absolutely no one, lithium battery shipping once again dominated the agenda at the recent 2017 Dangerous Goods Symposium.
The story, in a nutshell: There will continue to be more and more lithium batteries and battery-powered devices to transport, and transporting them safely and compliantly will continue to be challenging.
The big problem with shipping lithium batteries, of course, is their potential to—very rarely—spontaneously ignite due to thermal runaway.
To protect transport personnel, airline passengers and consumers, restrictions on shipping lithium batteries and devices will continue to be complex and burdensome, making compliance challenging—and potentially creating incentives to avoid compliance. This situation may persist indefinitely.
Unless there’s a breakthrough somewhere.
The biggest battery shipping breakthrough in years ever
Part of the problem with lithium battery transport is that batteries and devices are primarily shipped in conventional cardboard boxes, which are themselves flammable. If a box’s contents ignite, the box may not simply fail to contain the fire—it may actually fuel the fire.
That’s why most shipments of lithium batteries and devices require gels, heavy liners or other fire-retardant fillers, not to mention precise exterior labeling and marking.
But what if someone made the box part of the solution? What if the box didn’t burn so easily?
“Now the story changes completely,” says Labelmaster Senior Packaging Product Manager Bill Barger. “When your packaging actually enhances the safety of your battery shipment, life gets a lot simpler.”
That was the thinking behind the biggest battery breakthrough in years—maybe ever.
Introducing Obexion fire-resistant packaging
Labelmaster has teamed with an aerospace technology firm to develop an innovative new packaging material called Obexion—a complete line of protective packaging solutions engineered specifically for shipping and storing lithium batteries and devices that contain them.
Without gels, pellets or heavy liners, Obexion packaging reduces the risk of lithium battery fires spreading during transport. Lightweight, simple and cost-effective, Obexion technology is:
- Easy to use
- Scalable—effective for transporting most lithium batteries
- Customizable—with many off-the-shelf sizes for common applications
- Passive—for reduced training time
- Environmentally safe—requiring no special handling
Obexion packaging may look like ordinary cardboard or metal boxes, but its plain looks conceal highly advanced technology. Obexion isn’t just a new kind of box—it’s a fundamental shift in thinking.
Pack it. Seal it. Ship it.
In case you were wondering, the Obexion name is derived from obex, the Latin word for “barrier.” And it’s the ability of Obexion to provide a barrier—between the lithium batteries inside and whatever’s on the outside—that sets it apart from any other packaging technology.
For instance, watch this Obexion Max prototype box contain a 400°C battery fire without any flame escaping:
Pack it, seal it, ship it—that’s life with Obexion.
Obexion packaging comes in a variety of sizes and configurations and can be customized for specific applications. It’s also available with two protection levels:
- Obexion Pro. Flame-resistant cardboard packaging for recycled batteries and individual devices.
- Obexion Max. Maximum thermal runaway protection for damaged batteries and devices, in single-use cardboard or multiple-use metal.
Get complete details about Obexion at labelmaster.com/Obexion or call 800.621.5808.
Labelmaster is a full-service provider of goods and services for hazardous materials and Dangerous Goods professionals, shippers, transport operators and EH&S providers. See our full line of solutions at labelmaster.com.