Touchpad unusable when using remote / backup power source (Jackery battery)

My area is having a freak spring snowstorm today which knocked out my power and lead to me breaking out my portable Jackery battery so I can still get work done.

Plugging my Framework into the Jackery with the AC adapter has lead to a strange issue where the touchpad no longer works correctly. The cursor jumps about everywhere when touched and registers clicks and movement that I’m not inputting if I touch it while the laptop is connected to the Jackery. Unplugging the laptop from the power source immediately stops the issue, and this issue has never been present when plugged into a wall socket with the same AC adapter.

I’ve used multiple laptops and other computing devices with the Jackery and have never experienced this issue, so I’m hoping to get some insight into the matter from members with more knowledge about battery power sources than I have. Is there something different about the Framework’s touchpad compared to other laptops that I’m not aware of?

For info: The Jackery is outputting 110v 60Hz, and according to the documentation should be functionally identical to wall power for devices plugged into it. I also don’t know if it matters for this situation, but I’m on Fedora 35.

Hi do have anything earthed, you may have static interaction with your hand or some em cross over in the adapter. You could try grounding your wrist, though first ensure the laptop is grounded in case there is static build up on the Framework.

Just looked up ‘Jackery’ :slight_smile: I don’t see a line to earth

You could also try a different ac to dc power unit.

Still I’m not sure about your mains. Here in the UK the mains sockets have an earth pin so any equipment is grounded, you only have two maybe, so not so.

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Just before reading your reply I noticed that if I touch the case of the laptop with my left hand while using the touchpad with my right the issue vanishes, so it definitely appears to be a grounding / EM issue as you suggested. I’m still scratching my head as to why this is an issue specific to the Framework though, since it has not been present with my other laptops using the same battery power source.

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Are all the other laptop cases made of aluminium, which is better off grounded.

I’ve seen something similar happen before on my previous Thinkpad, in the vicinity of a big CNC mill (lots of EMI, and possibly bad grounding in the building) where the touchpad would work or not depending on whether it was plugged in and/or I touched the CNC frame. I don’t recall the details, but grounding / EMI issues breaking a touchpad is something that is not entirely unique :‐)

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