Detection of lithium plating in lithium-ion batteries
Abstract: With an increasing demand for sustainable transport solutions, there is a demand for electrified vehicles. One way to store energy on board an electrified vehicle is to use a lithium-ion battery (LIB). This battery technology has many advantages, such as being rechargeable and enabling reasonably high power output and capacity. To ensure reliable operation of LIB:s, the battery management system (BMS) must be designed with regards to the electrochemical dynamics of the battery. However, since the battery ages over time, the dynamics changes as well. It is possible to predict ageing, but some ageing mechanisms can occur randomly, e.g. due to variations of circumstances during manufacturing, and variations of battery user choices. Hence, by monitoring ageing mechanisms in situ, the BMS can adapt accordingly, similar to a closed loop control system. One ageing mechanism in LIB:s is lithium plating. This mechanism signifies when Li ions are electrochemically deposited as metal onto the negative electrode of the LIB during charging, and can induce other ageing mechanisms, such as gassing or electrolyte reduction. The present project has investigated a method for detecting Li plating in situ after its occurrence by both analysing the voltage change over time during open-circuit voltage (OCV) periods after charging and monitoring battery swelling forces. Results show a correlation between a high probability of Li plating and the appearance of a swelling force peak and an OCV plateau. However, results also show a possible correlation between the onset of Li plating and the onset of the swelling force peak, while also showing a greater detectability of the force signal compared to the electrochemical signal. Furthermore, the present results show that the magnitudes of both signals are probably related to the amount of plated Li. The amount of irreversibly lost Li from plating is shown to have a possible correlation with accumulation of swelling pressure. However, to further validate the feasibility of these two signals, more advanced analysis is required, which was not available during this project.
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