Can I bring an Alpha jump starter on an airplane?
Just like a portable power bank, the multi-function jump starter is classified as a dangerous goods Class 9, UN3480.
In the United States, the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration, commonly known as the FAA and TSA respectively, have a mission to provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system and to protect the nation’s transportation systems to ensure freedom of movement for people and commerce. They are the two regulating bodies that decide which types of items can go aboard planes, including power banks and other batteries. These are the rules they enforce:
1. Maximum capacity allowed: 100Wh (or up to 160Wh with special permits)
The FAA goes into precise details about taking power banks on planes: any battery that you take on board should not exceed 100Wh. External chargers or power banks are also considered to be a battery, and should not surpass a capacity of 27000mAh, or in other words, 100Wh. They also specify that batteries between 101Wh and 160Wh need airline approval, and anything above 160Wh is forbidden on the plane.
2. You are allowed a maximum of two power banks/Lithium-ion batteries.
Another important aspect to consider is that each person is allowed to have no more than two batteries of under 100Wh onboard.
In case you want to travel with more than two power banks, make sure to ask the airline for a special permit ahead of your flight. Alternatively, if you’re traveling with someone else, you could divide the batteries among you as each person can bring two of them onboard.
The two power bank rule means that you can travel with a maximum cumulative capacity of 54000mAh, without needing any type of permit from the airline.
3. Power banks are to be transported in carry-on luggage only
The TSA website is very straightforward when it comes to power banks. As stated, they are allowed in carry-on bags but not in checked-in bags. This rule is enforced because power banks can be hazardous and contain flammable materials, so there might be a risk of explosion and catching fire during the flight. Logically, it’s easier for crew members to put out the fire if the source is in the cabin rather than in the cargo area, as there are fire extinguishers.