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June 1985

Work Sheet
AGI
Electrical Installation
J31 Structural Features of Rooms for Batteries
Battery Rooms
Part 1
Preface
This Work Sheet takes into account the shift from open to
sealed batteries and has been revised accordingly. Measures
with regard to ventilation and structural features have been
reduced as compared to those in AGI J 31 Part 1 (August 75)
for open batteries.
Battery charging areas and stations are addressed in the AGI
Work Sheet J 31 Part 2.
Where this Work Sheet corresponds to DIN VDE 0510 Part 2'),
this has been noted.
Contents
1
2
3
4
General
Terms, Regulations, DIN-SpecJncatlons, Guidelines
Positioning and Requirements of the Battery Rooms
Positioning 01 the Batteries, Room DImensions
5 Construction ot Rooms
5.1 Walls, Ceilings
5.2 Floors
5.3
6
6.1
6.2
6.3
7
7.1
7.2
8
Windows, Doors
Installation
Electrical Installation
Plumbing
Battery Wiring
Heating, Ventilation
Heating
Ventilation
Accessories, Adjoining Room
1 General
This Work Sheet contains guidelines concerning structural
features of rooms containing stationary batteries. As defined
by DIN VDE 0510 Part 2'), they apply to special battery rooms
inside buildings, or specially separated areas in rooms, for
example: work areas such as offices, machine rooms, and
fabrication areas.
In general, no special structural features are required for
batteries in desks, containers, and battery compartments
within pieces of equipment; however, even with these the
sense of the appropriate guidelines and safety specifications
should still be observed (for example: precautions against
deflagration and explosion, electrolyte hazards, ventilation
per safety specification DIN VDE 0510 Part 2') Section 7).
For batteries with gas-tight cells, special structural features
are not necessary.
The stationary sealed batteries addressed here are per DIN
VDE 0510 Part 2'):
1. lead batteries using dilute sulphuric acid as an electrolyte.
2. Nickel-cadmium batteries using dilute potasium hydroxide
as an electrolyte.
During charging, according to the charging method used,
batteries develop to a greater or lesser extent a mixture of
hydrogen and oxygen. Adequate ventilation per Section 7 must
be provided. The electrolyte in batteries is severely corrosive
to paints, plastics, metals and masonry. For appropriate
measures see Section 5.
Working Association Industrial Constructions e. V.
Ebertplatz 1, 5000 Koln 1, Telelon (0221) 729693
I
Per DIN VOE 0510 Part 2') battery rooms are considered
electrical operating areas if the batteries' nominal voltage
does not exceed 120 V, or if partial voltages of 120 V to ground
are not exceeded 120 V. They are considered closed electrical
operating areas (DIN VDE 1000) if the batteries' rated voltage
exceeds 120 V, or if partial voltages to groulld exceed 120 V.
The preconditions for the structural design for battery and
battery charging areas are to be clarified with the electrical
design department.
For the design of battery rooms in special buildings, for ex-
ample explosion proof or fire hazard rooms, skyliners, large
meeting rooms, the special structural norms and regulations
areto be noticed in addition (VDE Norms, for example: DIN VDE
0108).
2 Terms, Regulations, DIN-Specifications,
Guidelines
2.1 Terms
A battery is one or more electrically connected cells.
Battery rooms or installations are electrical or closed electri-
cal operating premises for the supply of electrical energy (DIN
VDE 0510 Part 2').
2.2 Regulations, DIN-Specllicatlons, Guidelines
DIN 4844 Safety marking
DIN 18155
DIN 18166
DIN 18540
DIN 40 008
DIN 40050
DIN 40729
DIN VDE 0100
DIN VOE 0105
Part 1 COllcepts, prinCiples, safety signs
Part 2 Safety colors
Part 3 Supplementary reqUirements
Initial standard, fine-ceramic tiling Part 1,
Terms, materials, applications
Ceramic split tiles
Sealing of exterior wall joints in building
construction USing joint sealants
Part 1 Design of joints
Part 2 Jointsealants, requirements and
testing
Part 3 Building materials, application of
joint sealants
Electrotechnology, safety signs;
Part 3 Warning plates and supplemen-
tary signs
IP enclosures: Protection of electrical
equipment against contact, foreign bo-
dies and water
Galvanic secondary eel Is (accumu lators);
general terms and definitions
Specifications for the erection of power
installations with rated voltages up to
1000 V
Operation of power installations
Part 1 General requirements
Bezug durch den Curt R. Vincentz Verlag, Schiffgraben 43,
3000 Hannover 1, Telelon (0511) 3499-924, Fernschreiber 0923846
Page 2 AGI Work Sheet J 31 Pari 1
DIN VDE 0165
DIN VDE 0510
Installation of electrical apparatus in
hazardous areas
Accumulators and battery plants
Part 2') Stationary batteries
DIN VDE 0170/0171 Regulations for electrical equipment with
black damp and explosion protection
AGI Work Sheets
All
A 60
A 80
K 10
Industrial floors; concrete paving as
working flooring
Industrial floors; asphalt tiles flooring
Industrial floors of resin; impregnating,
sealing, coating, floor paving
Protection for concrete; surface treat-
ment, coating with coating materials
3 Positioning and Requirements of
Battery Rooms
The following instructions apply:
1. Free from ground and flood water
2. Easily accessible for transport of batteries, supports and
mounting equipment, as well as for maintenance of the
batteries. Adequate transit clearance.
3. Access only for electrical experts and qualified personnel
per DIN VDE 0105 Part 1 Section 2.5.1 and 2.5.2
4. Well ventilated, either naturally or artificially (see Section
7, Ventilation)
5. Dry, not subject to freezing, cool, minor temperature vari-
ations of approx. 10 kelvin, with avoidance of temperature
differences within the room as well as direct sunlight on
the batteries, sunprotection may be retired.
S. Free from shocks.
7. Protected from harmful gases, vapors (for example: chlo-
rine, ammonial), and dust.
Install incoming/outgoing vent openings against the pre-
vailing wind.
8. Impervious to the effects of spilled electroly1es (sulphuric
acid, potasium hydroxide)
9. lead and nickel-cadmium batteries should be located in
separate rooms whenever possible, in order to prevent
confusion of maintenance tools.
10. Connection for water for cleaning purpose in an adjoining
room (see Section B) in exceptional circumstances in bat-
tery room (see Section 6.2)
11. Pipelines for fluids, steam, and flammable gases should
not be run through battery rooms; if they do, then they
should be protected.
12. Locate batteries close to charging equipment and d.c.
switchgear in order to keep feed wiring short.
') Draft version March 85
4 Mounting of Batteries,
Room Dimensions
4.1 Mounting and Arrangement 01 Batteries
If in a particular instance a vibration-free battery room is not
available, special provision must be made for vibration-
dampening. This requires consultation with the manufacturer.
Batteries are generally mounted on stands for ease of main-
tenance. This is unnecessary with tall cells (seeFigure 1).
Floor slands
~ ') ----..J -+If..-
I'-' 1'-';""'"
Step stands
lIJ
TIfn
-'--' Tear stands
i t ~ o u l slands
n n n
Dimensions in mm
n n n
I
!
-'600 'I
I
I
I
t
n n n
Figure 1: Mounting and arrangement of batteries
1. Passageway width should be one and a half times the depth
of the cells, however, at least 500 mm; 800 mm is recom-
mended.
2. With wooden stands or 11 00 r i nsulati on, adequate i nsu lation
resistance is important. Metal stands must be isolated or
connected to a ground lead.
3. The exact dimensions of the stands should be determined
according to information from the electrical design depart-
ment.
4. For the positioning of cells see Section 4.1 of this Work
Sheet.
Steel or wooden stands must be protected by painting or
coating against the effects of eleclroly1e. For protection
against dampness and leakage current, wooden stands are
II
I
always mounted on stand isolators. Instead of floor or step
stands, pedestals of masonry or concrete with electrolyte-
resistant surfacing can be used (see Section 5.2).
Narrow cells, especially nickel-cadmium batteries, are in
many cases installed in battery cases, which are then mounted
on stands.
Electrically active battery components with more than 24 V
potential difference must be separated by at least 10 mm, or
insulated to a corresponding' degree. Where batteries are
installed in battery cases or composition cases, just those are
insulated.
The rows of cells must be accessible from at least one side.
The width of the passageway should be appropriate to the size
of the batteries. It should be about one and a half times the
depth of the cells, however, no less than 500 mm.
A width of 800 mm is recommended.
The distance between the wall and the battery should be at
least 500 mm.
If the batteries' nominal voltage is greater than 120 V, main-
tenance personnel should be protected by protective gear or
safety measures.
Cells between which there exists a nominal voltage of more
than 120 V, should be arranged so that the electrically active
components of these cells cannot be touched simultaneously.
A distance of greater than 1500 mm between the active com-
ponents of these cells is considered adequate forthis purpose.
Otherwise, all electrically active components, such as for
example connectors and poles, must be insulated and comply
with the requirements per DIN VDE 0510 Part 2') Section 4.1.
Consultation with the electrical design department is required.
4.2 Room Dimensions (see Figure 2)
The required floor space of the room is a product of the size,
number, and arrangement of the batteries. If an adjoining room
is not available, a storage area for tools and equipment should
be provided. Data can be obtained from the electrical design
department.
The clear space above service passages, walkways, galleries,
and maintenance catwalks in battery rooms should be at least
2000 mm (DIN VDE 0510 Part 2'). Ventilation conduits should
be taken into account here (see Section 7).
See Section 7.2 for the connection between room volume and
ventilation.
5 Construction of Rooms
Walls, ceilings, and load-bearing structures should be of solid
construction.
For load-bearing structures, the load comprises by the weight
and arrangement of batteries must be accounted for with a
comparable equivalent load. Again, data should be obtained
from the electrical design department.
All work required for compliance with Sections 5 to 7 must be
completed before installation 01 batteries.
5.1 Walls, ceilings
Concrete ceilings can be left raw. A smoothest possible sur-
face is recommended.
AGI Work Sheel J 31 Pari 1 Page 3 .
Surfaces of walls should be smooth, in order to prevent dust
accumulation. If walls are plastered, plaster of plaster group
P II or P IVa, b, c per DIN 4102 Part 4 Section 3.1.5 is recom-
mended.
Concrete walls can remain unfinished, however, they should
be deburred and smoothed out.
Connecting and extension joints in walls must be jointed with
permanently elastic electrolyte-resistant materials per DIN
18540. Services of walls and ceilings should be resistant to
electrolytes (acids/caustics). For coating materials see AGI-
Work Sheet K 10.
Walls may also be faced with ceramic tiles and panels.
5.2 Floors
5.2.1 Construction
Flooring and load-bearing structures is generally constructed
without slope. Floor and pedestal surfaces should be electro-
lyte-resistant and free of cracks. Joints should be filled with
electrolyte-resistant, permanenlly elastic material per DIN
18540.
The following floor topings are used (examples):
1. Smooth concrete floor or concrete topping with coated
surface (see AGI K 10), as well as synthetic resin flooring
(see AGI A 80).
2. High-pressure asphalt tiles per AGI A 60 Section 5.5.4-con-
suit with manufacturer.
3. Ceramic split tiles DIN 18166, or ceramic floor tiles DIN
18155.
Where floors intersect with vertical surfaces, these jOints must
be sealed.
5.2.2 Electrical Conductivity
With regard to the electrical conductivity of floor surfaces, see
DIN VDE 0510 Part 2') Section 9.2.5.
5.3 Windows, Doors
5.3.1 Windows
Windows are basically not required. Where windows are in-
cluded, they should be constructed in such a manner as 10
avoid direct sunshine on the batteries, in order to prevent the
uneven heating of individual containers. If the windows are
accessible from outside, for example on public roads, they
should be protected from the outside by a fine wire mesh or
should be made of wire-reinforced glass (DIN VDE 0510 Part
2').
Where windows can be opened these openings must be pro-
vided with grating (mesh 10/10 mm), in order to prevent the
entry of animals and leaves.
5.3.2 Doors
Battery room doors should be fire-retardant where necessary,
and must open towards the outside.
Doors should be rabbeted all the way around. With batteries
of 1500 Ah and larger, steps should be taken to ensure that in
case of damage electrolyte does not escape into other rooms.
This might take the form of high thresholds.
1) Draft version March 85
Page 4 AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1
J I I
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n-
Outgoing air J
------
,+

-

- .. ,
-
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.. '"
i:PI
.....
., .;

I
Section A-A
Figure 2: Battery room (dimensions in mm)
Door wilh
warning sign-
I

i
Container with dislilled waler
I for lights and heating
i I (il necessary)
I Eleclric cabllng---ti
I I I : ;: 0 I
,'-.... : [d _ ! ' . 1-.-1
, Adjoining room!,' IiThreshold _,J - I ; : ; ;
Light switch - V Water Ii i Mainlenance I' -' :1
o L LJ I! r inslructions i - Badery 1 II
L._._ .--1 0 -------.-j .-; r": .-,:
:=====::.1: q!:i: - :!!!H
A r----T---------' ! r
L _._ W:i: 1;50 LAir exil conduit _._J _ Arrows show direction 01 air flow i
. 1:1
i ! Battery 3 I HI d ! ; : i - ! ! ; i H
I: q . . - . '"ii
I: j 1>_ 800 Ii
H Ii !saltery4 H I - BaHery2 I 1\
411 i ! (H I I rl . .. . _ " .. JI
: E' 800 .J . . . -- . . .. ,j
__ --I IJ-. ._ +__ . J,,50
'"

Opening
Floorplan
I

l Ventilation window or glass blocks with ventilation opening.
if no venlilalion available

I
I
4B
,
...-tncoming air
4- Incoming air
.-Incoming air
AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1 Page 5
Cable duct through walls
For Insulated wiring or cable

: V-:" ::;1 :
; f.', :-;.1 :
i I;:: -n -;
, ["'. 't
Air entrance opening with grate
Unit "a"
Section 8-8
Air ducting
ij I IL
Air exhaust duettD above rool level i jitl
b"l iJ,
tlb t = n I
(ventilator) I
I U L
-1600 _
r
Detail for natural ventilation
Unit "b"
Section C-C (Artificial ventilation)
Cable duct through floors
1--- Clay or plastic pipe
Unit "c" Unit "c 1" Section D-D
"
Page 6 AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1
5.3.3 Markings, Warning Signs
Battery rooms are to be marked by warning sign WS 2 per DIN
40008 Part 3 on the door.
In addition, in the vicinity 01 a battery or batteries a sign per
DIN 4844 Part 2 "lire, open flame, and smoking forbidden" is
to be mounted.
6 Installation
6.1 Electrlcallnstallallon
For electrical installation, wiring, cable, and electrical equip-
ment which meets requirements for damp and wet rooms (DIN
VDE 0100) must be used.
Electric lighting fittings of at least protective class IP X1 per
DIN 40050 should be mused.
For purposes of maintenance they should be positioned In the
center of passageways in such a manner that they are easily
accessible. Electrical equipment whose operation can gener-
ate combustive sparks, for example: switches, plugs, ventila-
tors, and lighting fittings must be located at least 500 mm from
batteries. If this is not possible, then DIN VDE 0165, Installation
of electrical apparatus in hazardous areas must be complied
with (for example: use of specially designed equipment per
DIN VDE 0171, see also DIN VDE 0510 Part 2').
Line-powered portable lights shall only be used without
switches.
6.2 Plumbing (If provided)
Water connections, drains, and exposed piping must be lo-
cated at least 1500 mm from live electrical parts.
Exposed metallic water pipes must be grounded per DIN VDE
0100.
6.3 Battery wiring
Wiring and cable through walls and ceilings must be sealed.
Sealing can consist of for example: mortar or foamed plastic
in the case of plastic wiring; where necessary, fire protection
requirements should be met.
It is recommended that bus bars and wires to the battery poles
do not be run directly above the batteries, so that work on the
wiring can be carried out without hazard.
7 Healing, Ventilation
7.1 Healing
Ambient room temperature should if at all possible not fall
below + 5 DC nor exceed + 35 DC.
Where heating is required, electrical heating is recommended.
Heating with open flame or with units having incandescent
surfaces is not acceptable.
The surface temperature of heating elements may not exceed
200 DC. Heating elements should be positioned so that uneven
heating with temperature differences of 10 K within the batte-
ries are avoided.
7.2 Venlllation
Battery rooms are to be ventilated in such a manner that any
gas mixture occasioned by charging or discharging (hydrogen
and oxygen) is sufficiently diluted by natural or artificial ven-
tilation to completely rule out the possibility of the lowest
ignition point being reached.
Attempts should be made 10 construct and arrange rooms in
such a way that natural ventilation is sufficient (DIN VDE 050
Part 2') Section 7).
The minimum volume of air per hour required to dilute the gas
mixture is to be calculated by the electrical design department
per DIN VDE 0510, and relayed to the ventilation expert for
measuring with the ventilation system.
The relationship of the required hourly minimum air quantity
per DIN VDE 0510 Part 2') to the room's free air volume give
the hourly air exchange rate.
Structural features should be planned for normal operation.
For the charging of batteries with higher current levels, for
example: at start-up, portable supplementary ventilators can
be us.ed.
Air flows should be planned so that air enters as close to floor
level as possible, 1iows over the celis, and exits as high as
possible at the opposite side of the room (see Figure 2).
Air entrance and exit openings must possess the following
minimum dimensions, where a is the required hourly air
exchange rate.
F (cm2) 28 x a (m'th)
a is to be calculated per DIN VDE 0510 Part 2') Section 7.1.
For natural ventilation, an air flow rate through the openings
of 0.1 mts is assumed.
Draft air vents must extend sufficiently high into free air, and
may not exit in smoke stacks, nor in the vicinity of intake vents
of air conditioning systems. .
Air exhausts must be discharged high enough Into free air and
shall not run into chimneys or near the intake of air condition-
ing systems.
All ventilation ducts and system components in air outflow
should be electrolyte reSistant, for example: PVC, or sheet
metal coated with plastic.
If artificial ventilation is necessary, ventilator operation must
be assured at the start of charging (DIN VDE 0510 Part 2').
With artificial ventilation, slight under pressure should be
maintained irl rooms, in order to prevent the gases entering
into neighbouring areas. For this reason suction ventilators
should be used.
8 Accessories, Adjoining Room
Within the battery rooms mainterlance instructions must at all
times be accessible and legible.
The maintenance equipment and material recommended by
the battery manufacturer, for example: containers with dis-
tilled water, cleaning agents and equipment, can be stored in
enclosures within the battery room or in an adjoining room
(see Figure 2).
') Draft version March 85
Explanations concerning
the AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1
Today the sealed battery, which prevents the previously crit-
ical escape of electrolyte, is by far the most commonly used
type. This influences the design of battery rooms, which can
now be simpler, and for example must not necessarily be tiled.
This type of battery is dominant today so that the term "open
battery" is no longer included in this Work Sheet.
To this is added the influence of currerltly used battery alloys,
which produce lower gas emission rates during routine charg-
ing. The expense required for ventilation, even for extensive
battery set ups, is consequently greatly reduced. Today, bat-
teries in many cases require only comparatively small rooms,
AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1 Page 7
and, contrary to the opinion frequently met with, they are not
considered explosive hazards. Sealed batteries allow future
cost reductions with all necessary structural features.
Contributors to the AGI Work Sheet J 31 Part 1:
Dipl.-Ing. Freiberger, Erlangen
Dipl.-Ing. Gellel, Frankfurt
Dipl.-Ing. Hasenaecker, Essen
Dipl.-Ing. Hoenig, Essen
Eleklro-Ing. Jeslek, Hagen
Dipl.-Ing. Nicolet, Cologne
Dipl.-Ing. Pohlmann, Mannheim
Dipl.-Ing. Reimann, Leverkusen
Ober-Ing. Schmidt, Dortmund.
This AGI Work Sheet is the result of a collective work and provides information about the state of technics at the time of
publication. A liability for possible errors in spite of all possible precautions, is not assumed.
Reproduction of AGI Work Sheets only in accordance with memorandum 3 and 4 of the German Norm Board. Translations only
with the authorization at the AGI-Office.