- The design used showed that between 49 and 60 degrees Celsius, there was no lithium plating
- Nickel used in the design increased the cost of each cell by 0.47 per cent
A team of researchers at the Pennsylvania State University has demonstrated that they can charge an electrical vehicle in 10 minutes for a 200 to 300-mile (300-500 km) range. The researchers say that the technology is completely scalable because all the cells are based on industrially available electrodes.
Lithium-ion batteries normally used in electric vehicles degrade when rapidly charged at surrounding temperatures under 10 degrees Celsius as lithium deposits in spikes on the anode surface. This kind of lithium plating reduces cell capacity and can create unsafe battery conditions.
Self-heating nickel structure
To reduce heat time and heat the entire battery at a uniform temperature, the researchers outfitted a lithium ion battery design with a self-heating nickel structure that preheats in less than thirty seconds. To carry out the testing, the researchers charged three graphite pouch cells designed for hybrid electric vehicles at 40, 49 and 60 degree Celsius and kept a control cell at 20 degrees using cooling strategies to maintain constant charge temperatures.
To check that lithium plating did not occur, the researchers fully discharged the cells and opened them. The team found out that the batteries preheated to 60 degrees Celsius could sustain the extremely fast charging process for 1,700 cycles but the control cell could sustain for 60 cycles only.
Increases the cost of each cell by 0.47 per cent
The analysis also showed that between 49 and 60 degrees Celsius, there was no lithium plating. The nickel used increases the cost of each cell by 0.47 per cent but external heaters used in current models will not be required if this design is used claims the research.