“Please buckle your seat belts and prepare for takeoff, but I’m sorry- you’re going to have to dispose of your Samsung Galaxy Note7 before this aircraft takes flight due to the recent reports of the device exploding.” This is what many travelers have been hearing as they approach their seats on an airplane before their flight. Some people are even prevented from getting onto the plane due to their choice in phone.
According to the Department of Transportation (DOT), they are taking this precaution to prevent in-flight fires and to keep the most amount of personnel safe, even though this new ban is an inconvenience for people with the Samsung Galaxy Note7.
So what is actually going on scientifically with the Samsung Galaxy Note7? The DOT has reports from Samsung customers saying they experienced what they called an ‘evolution of heat’ and an explosive battery. Due to the specific type of battery the Samsung Galaxy S7 has been using, a Lithium Ion Battery, the battery’s cell has a tendency to fail while charging which is what leads to the explosive incidents and burnt phones, according to Science Alert. Since people with Samsung Galaxy S7s are constantly using them for phone calls, texts, and notes, the battery ends are being over used, causing the electrolytes to boil, rupturing the battery cell casing and burn the phones exterior, which could lead to a fire if the boiling is bad enough.
Due to this intensive electrical malfunction on such a commonly used device, there have been recalls twice on the product, and now a public ban on the S7 on airplanes. Many unhappy customers are also returning their phones due to their incapability to function after being engulfed in an electrical flame.
This is a problem for people who fly on airplanes because the ban on the Galaxy S7 considers the phone to be hazardous under the Federal Hazardous Material Regulations which doesn’t allow people to travel with lithium battery cells or electronic devices that may be known to start fires. These Lithium Ion batteries are not a foreign concept to the technological world, says the Chicago Tribune. In fact, they are in most of your laptops, phones, and other commonly used rechargeable items, it is just the overheating of the Galaxy S7 that makes the battery too dangerous to keep on airplanes for too long.