Cambridge EnerTech’s

Diagnostics & Model Analysis Reveal Safety Strategies

Predicting Lithium-Ion Battery Energies

October 23, 2019


Accurate diagnostic tests and models are critical for predicting and controlling complex electrochemical, thermal, and mechanical behavior of lithium-ion batteries (LIBs). As research & development aims to create higher energy density LIBs, these models and tests must also advance. The Diagnostics & Model Analysis Reveal Safety Strategies meeting continues this vital dialogue to integrate and implement LIB safety to meet ever-increasing energy demands.

Wednesday, OCTOBER 23

7:00 am Registration and Morning Coffee


8:00 Chairperson’s Remarks

William Q. Walker, PhD, Aerospace Technologist, NASA-Johnson Space Center

8:05 FEATURED PRESENTATION: Modeling, Validation, and Detection of Thermal Runaway from Cell Swelling and Gas Evolution

Anna G. Stefanopoulou, PhD, William Clay Ford Professor of Technology; Director, Energy Institute, University of Michigan

A low order electrothermal model with three tunable parameters was developed and calibrated to capture the thermal runaway evolution during an internal short event. The model includes the cell swelling behavior due to the gas evolution and it matches the experimentally measured force on nickel manganese cobalt oxide pouch cells at two different levels of state of charge, leading to a rupture and quick thermal runaway if fully-charged, or a slow, self-discharge process if half-charged. This model’s prediction of force measurement enables a higher confidence in the detection and subsequent isolation of cells undergoing thermal runaway.

8:35 Combustion and Explosion Characteristics of Gases Vented from Li-Ion Batteries

Mathias Henriksen, MSc, Research Associate, Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences, University of South-Eastern Norway

This presentation will address the combustion and explosive properties of gases vented from Li-ion batteries. The main focus will be the solvent used in the electrolyte, with results from both experiments and simulation. Combustion properties obtained from simulations of vented gas mixtures will also be presented.

9:05 Modeling Thermal Runaway Propagation - Effect of Venting

Elisabeth Kolp, MSc, Research Associate, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Institute for Electrical Energy Storage Technology, Technical University of Munich

Simulating thermal runaway propagation of a lithium-ion battery system, the heat generation of a cell is taken into account, although recently published results showed that the vented gas carries more heat. The talk will introduce our model approach of thermal runaway propagation in a battery system, how to consider the venting process, and the effect of venting on the propagation.

9:35 Utilizing Fractional Thermal Runaway Calorimetry (FTRC) Results for Assembly-Level Thermal Analysis

William Q. Walker, PhD, Aerospace Technologist, NASA-Johnson Space Center

Fractional thermal runaway calorimetry (FTRC) is a new NASA-developed testing technique designed to quantify the total energy yield of lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery thermal runaway (TR) while simultaneously tallying the fractions of energy released through the cell casing and the ejecta material. Correct representation of the energy yield and the associated division thereof is critical to accurate thermal modeling of battery assembly-level response to thermal runaway events. Here we show how to utilize FTRC results in a practical, quick-turnaround, thermal analysis.

10:05 Grand Opening Coffee Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing

10:45 Linking External Risks to Internal Events: A High-Speed X-Ray Imaging Approach

Donal Finegan, PhD, Battery Researcher, Vehicle Electrification, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

High-speed X-ray imaging in concert with single-cell calorimetry is used to link internal failure phenomena to external risks during thermal runaway of 18650 Li-ion cells. Through an extensive matrix of over 200 abuse tests, the location of failure initiation, as well as choice of materials used inside the cells, were shown to significantly affect the failure mechanisms and risks associated with thermal runaway. This work has profound implications for ‘worst-case’ abuse testing techniques and selection of materials for safe high-performance Li-ion systems.

11:15 Theoretical and Numerical Methods for Prediction of Li-Ion Cell Temperature Distribution During Thermal Runaway

Ankur Jain, PhD, Associate Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, The University of Texas at Arlington

This presentation summarizes research on developing theoretical and numerical techniques for predicting temperature rise in Li-ion cells due to non-linear heat generation in thermal runaway. These methods contribute towards cell safety through proactive prediction of thermal state of the cell in adverse conditions. These methods range from a theoretical non-dimensional number with predictive capability to complex numerical simulations for predicting thermal runaway propagation in battery packs.

11:45 Sponsored Presentation (Opportunity Available)

12:15 pm Luncheon Presentation (Sponsorship Opportunity Available) or Enjoy Lunch on Your Own

12:45 Session Break


1:30 Chairperson’s Remarks

Summer R. Ferreira, PhD, Principal Member of Technical Staff, Power Sources R&D, Sandia National Laboratories

1:35 FEATURED PRESENTATION: 2nd Life Batteries and Optical Sensors for Battery Safety Issues

Wolfgang Schade, PhD, Head, Department Fiber Optical Sensor Systems, Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute; Head, Department Applied Photonics, IEPT, Clausthal University of Technology

2:05 Battery Safety from Material to the Cell by in situ Synchrotron Characterizations

Xiang Liu, PhD, Visiting Scientist, Electrochemical Energy Storage Group, Chemical Sciences and Engineering, Argonne National Laboratory

In this presentation, the effect of battery components on safety will be discussed: for example, the concerns of high-nickel cathode; the safety effect of the separator (PP/PE/PP, polyamine, PET, etc.); and the safety consideration of silicon content anode. Advanced synchrotron X-ray-based XRD and XAS will be employed for various in situ measurements. Possible ways to improve battery safety will also be discussed.

2:35 Refreshment Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing


3:15 Rigorous Approaches to Quantifying Cell Failure to Enable Large-Scale Failure Modeling—Materials, Mechanics, and Electrochemistry

Summer R. Ferreira, PhD, Principal Member of Technical Staff, Power Sources R&D, Sandia National Laboratories

Using 18650-format commercial lithium-ion (Li-ion) cells, we explore the abuse response and materials property changes in whole cell and cell materials during failure. Findings are used with materials property-informed thermal models to approach quantitative measures of heat release in order to provide useful information on the potential thermal response of commercially relevant Li-ion chemistries during energetic failure events.

3:45 Modeling Anchored by Key Tests to Establish Driving Design Factors for Safe, High Power/Voltage Batteries

Eric C. Darcy, PhD, Battery Technical Discipline Lead, Propulsion and Power Division, NASA-Johnson Space Center

Through a large team effort involving design, simulation, and subscale testing, we’ve established key design features that drive the safety and performance of high-performing and high-power battery designs for spacecraft applications. Trades between efficient thermal management for meeting high-power discharge operating requirements and thermal isolation necessary for protecting adjacent cells from a thermal runaway cell have led us to interesting results.

4:15 Predictive Health and Safety Models to Manage Large-Scale Battery Deployments

Dania Ghantous, MS, Vice President Technology and Co-Founder, Qnovo

Existing systems are ineffective in predicting safety failures because they rely on lagging indicators, such as capacity. These failures are caused by the presence of defects introduced during manufacturing, assembly, transportation, and use of counterfeit cells and may be catastrophic in nature. Our adaptive algorithms use ion diffusion as the primary diagnostic measurement to detect the presence of defects and prevent potential failures.

4:45 Welcome Reception in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing

5:30 Dinner Workshop Registration

6:00 Close of Diagnostics & Model Analysis Reveal Safety Strategies

6:009:00 Dinner Workshop*

W2: Too Hot to Handle: Key Differences in Thermal Runaway Behavior and Failure Analysis of High Voltage Li-Ion Cells

Matthew Glazer, PhD, PE, Managing Engineer, Materials and Corrosion Engineering Practice, Exponent

As higher voltage Li-ion cells become more prevalent in the market, a clearer understanding of these cells’ post thermal runaway signatures is needed for effective failure analysis of events that occur during testing or in the field. In this talk, I will compare the thermal runaway behavior and post thermal runaway electrode morphology between 4.2V and 4.35V lithium-ion cells using both non-destructive and destructive techniques, and key lessons will be discussed to inform investigations of failed cells in the field.

*Separate registration required.

* The program is subject to change without notice, due to unforeseen reason.

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