Understand How Li-ion Batteries Fail
Li-ion batteries are everywhere powering all sorts of devices from e-cigarettes to smartphones computers and electric cars.
But, do we understand how Li-ion batteries fail ?
Tests have showed that failure in a Li-ion battery cell can cause a potentially catastrophic chain reaction and has been attributed as the cause of a number of plane crashes in recent years. Worth understanding how Li-Ion batteries work.
Millions of Li-ion batteries are manufactured every year and understanding what happens when they fail is key to improving their design. In a study published in Nature Communications, scientists believe they now have better insight into how the failure happens.
Paul Shearing from University College London (UCL) said “This new technique will provide a capability for evaluating different batteries, and how they age, degrade and fail”
Using a combination of high-speed X-ray tomography, radiography and thermal imaging, Shearing and a team were able to describe how overheating causes gas pockets to form inside the battery thus deforming its inner layers.
Overheating can happen due to electrical or mechanical abuse or the presence of an external heat source for example failure of adjacent cell in a larger battery pack, said Shearing.
“Depending on the cell design, there are a range of critical temperatures which, when reached, will trigger further exothermic events, which also generate heat,”
“Once the rate of heat generation exceeds the rate of heat dissipation into the environment, the temperature of the cell starts to rise, thereafter a sequence of detrimental events propagates in a process known as thermal runaway.”
Thankfully Li-ion battery problems are very rare. Get in touch to learn more about enterprise mobility….batteries included !