Lithium-ion cells shapes to face new electric challenges
Developed more than 25 years ago, the various lithium-ion cells used in batteries are widespread and are present in our daily objects and devices. In the race to decarbonise, electricity is the major challenge of this decade and lithium-ion cells attract more interest than ever. Indeed, these cells currently are the densest technology, the lightest metal and offer the best safety/performance ratio.
To meet the development of new technologies and the challenges of today and tomorrow, lithium-ion cells must adapt to the needs of all industries and markets. Size, safety or cost, a tools manufacturer does not have the same constraints and needs as a car manufacturer.
Thus, different shapes of cells have been designed to meet all uses: cylindrical, prismatic, pouch. Although the lithium-ion cells shapes use similar electrochemistries, they cover a different need. They are also managed differently and do not have the same characteristics.
Cylindrical lithium-ion cells
Cylindrical lithium-ion cells are very common. They are used, for example, in electric bicycles and scooters, in computers or in certain electric vehicles such as those of the American brand Tesla. Cylindrical cells are also used in the military and space sectors, particularly on satellites. Also known by manufacturers as for example 18650 or 21700 references, they offer the advantage to manufacturers of being able to modify and adjust the power/energy ratio without impacting the container.
However, they have a low capacity of 3.5 Ah maximum for each cell. Moreover, although assembly can be carried out easily, thermal management and cooling are more complex to control and are the main drawback.
Prismatic lithium-ion cells
With a container generally made of metal and plastic, prismatic lithium-ion cells are certainly the most resistant. They are used in electric vehicles as well as in stationary batteries such as in containers. With lithium-ion cells of up to 300 Ah, they have high capacities and do not need to be connected in parallel like other cells.
In addition, thanks to their screw terminals, assembly and replacement are easy. However, due to their container, they have a slightly lower energy density than other cells.
Pouch lithium-ion cells
Named Pouch in reference to their pocket-like appearance, these li-ion cells are common and very present in our smartphones and electric vehicles. Thanks to their flexible envelope, they can be adapted to all types of devices and structures, in all shapes and sizes.
Indeed, in the form of a rectangular pocket or a semi-circle, in a truck or in a watch, the shape of the Pouch lithium-ion cells is extremely flexible.
On the development side, they also have two main advantages: they have the ability to achieve a high energy density while maintaining a low cost through their envelope. However, this same development requires the consideration of many parameters and is therefore reserved for highly qualified experts. While their envelope is flexible, the container is still fragile and easy to damage, making it less safe in case of an impact.
The ability to master all three forms of cells
Mastering li-ion cells is therefore not something that can be done by just anyone. Each cell type has different characteristics and therefore requires special know-how. As a result, many professionals on the market have only mastered one or two types of lithium-ion cells.
However, as lithium-ion remains the essential technology for a booming electric market, it is essential to master all cell types in order to be able to answer to each project, each market, each need.
Because E-MERSIV has clearly identified the new challenges of the current market and its needs, the company is now one of the few key players able to offer all three forms of lithium-ion cells.
This distinction makes the company a must for all industry professionals, as E-MERSIV can count on more than 20 years of know-how in lithium-ion batteries as well as great expertise in thermal management and BMS.
Finally, through its high performance lithium-ion batteries equipped with an innovative immersion cooling system and an enhanced BTMS, E-MERSIV can support all your projects and equip each battery pack with the lithium-ion cells the most suited to your needs.
More information on: e-mersiv.com