Thermal Runaway is industrials’ major fear as we know that any callback cost them billions of dollars. At a time where environmental issues are bigger than ever, electric democratization will need to be strong. However, the electric vehicle adoption is still rising slowly. Final consumers are seeking for an electric vehicle that will provide them the best experience, at least equal to those from petrol cars. The ball is in the industrial court to meet the user’s needs: charging time, autonomy, power, lifetime. Saying this, increasing the user’s final experience means increasing the battery performances and its requests. When analyzing the risk of Thermal runaway when a battery is over stressed, you easily understand the industrial’s focus to maximize security over the user experience.
What is Battery Thermal Runaway?
Majority of EV vehicles and our domestic electronic components (phones or laptops for example) are using Lithium-Ion in their batteries. Even though the technology is used since more than twenty years, the chemistry remains complex to manage with the risk of thermal runaway.
But what is a thermal runaway? A battery pack as we can find on our EV vehicles is composed of multiples modules, composed themselves with multiples cells. Assembled together, they supply the necessary energy to the vehicle. However, when a too powerful request is being asked to the battery (acceleration, heavy load), a fast charging or even in extreme ambient conditions, cells can reach very high temperature in a very short amount of time.
With a temperature rise that can reach 470°C per minute, this extreme heat induce the internal combustion of all materials that can lead to the cell ignition. Built in parallel, degradation and cell ignition can lead to a thermal runaway phenomenon to any adjacent cell. Often pointed at in the news after cell phones explosion, thermal runaway can be even more impressive when it happens in an electric vehicle. Indeed, from a single damaged cell, it is then the all battery pack that can take fire or even explode.
Industrial’s challenge to optimize Thermal Runaway
Ironically, even though the reasons for this phenomenon are now well known, we never asked as much effort to our batteries.
In fact, industrials have well understood that EV democratization will only happen if their offer is at least equivalent to the combustion-powered vehicle market, thus must adapt to the consumer wishes.
Performance, fast charge, range, lifetime… Final users wish to benefit from a complete user experience and are not ready to make any compromise. Facing industrials that must guarantee security beyond everything, final user is not necessarily aware of danger induced by Lithium Ion batteries, at least no more than the ignition potential of the fuel in case of a crash with a conventional car. When looking at our vehicle innovation during the past twenty years, it seems hard to believe that the market leader have still not been able to overcome this constraint.
Immersion cooling as a thermal runaway barrier
Developing new cooling systems is nowadays the most serious study if we want to increase battery capacities whilst keeping an homogeneous and suitable ambient temperature without any thermal runaway risk. Immersive cooling is clearly today the best innovative technology that can promote the best safety – performance ratio. Thanks to a dielectric fluid directly in contact with the cells, immersive cooling opens wide areas to the outstanding performance and ultra-fast charging. Keeping the right cooling and the homogeneous temperature within all cells, immersions answer directly to one main question industrials are facing: ensuring the cells lifetime and avoid thermal runaway
E-MERSIV revolutionize the market
Thanks to its high performance batteries cooled using immersion, E-MERSIV remove all barriers linked to EV adoption. Where it was not thinkable to reduce charging time without reducing significantly cells lifetime, it is now possible to charge up 80% of your battery within 10 minutes. With high performance and high-density batteries, a lifetime increased by up to 30% and its capabilities to withstand extreme ambient conditions, E-MERSIV takes on the electric challenge whilst bringing a new level of security. Focused in increasing both the user experience and security, E-MERSIV answer both the end user and industrials needs.
Because innovation have always been torn by a primary need of security, actual technologies have always tarnished until now any significant step forward in the EV’s user experience. Thanks to its management in thermal runaway, immersive cooling finally enables to answer these user’s needs and is the start of a very promising future for the electric vehicles.