Batteries & Fuel Cells Blog Posts

Using Simulation in the Race Against Corrosion

Lexi Carver | December 28, 2015

Corrosion is one of the most serious factors affecting the transportation industry. In an effort to minimize its impact, a German research institute and the manufacturers of Mercedes-Benz joined forces to investigate the corrosion occurring in automotive rivets and sheet metal. Using COMSOL Multiphysics simulation, they were able to study corrosion’s effects on car components.

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Ed Fontes | November 25, 2015

During the discharge of a battery, the current in the circuit flows from the positive to the negative electrode. According to Ohm’s law, this means that the current is proportional to the electric field, which says that current flows from a positive to negative electric potential. But what happens inside the battery? Does the current flow from negative to positive electric potential? This blog post explains the potential profile inside a battery during discharge and recharge.

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Tommy Zavalis | July 14, 2015

Batteries generally operate through numerous processes that depend on even more parameters. How can you find out more about what’s going on within them? One approach is to look at the cell’s electrical impedance. The Lithium-Ion Battery Impedance demo app, available in the Application Gallery, can be used to interpret the impedance of a specific lithium-ion battery design with minimal effort. It can also help parameterize the system, a useful step for setting up accurate time-dependent models in the future.

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Edmund Dickinson | April 22, 2015

You might think you’re a smooth driver — but your engine probably doesn’t. Everyday obstructions like traffic lights and changing speed limits mean that the power demands of a car drivetrain vary rapidly. Since we expect new technologies like hybrid or electric vehicles to match the performance of existing cars in responding instantly to the demands of our right foot, designers need to make sure that this is possible and safe. One part of this involves modeling batteries.

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Ed Fontes | February 5, 2015

Starting the car on a cold winter morning can be unpleasant if you have not been proactive the night before. When you are unable to start an engine, it is often the battery’s fault. Why is a battery more sensitive than other processes in a car? The answer lies in the battery’s ability to convert chemical energy into electrical energy, with a minimum of heat generation, and the relatively small amounts of thermal energy available at low temperatures.

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Bridget Cunningham | October 9, 2014

In the performance of lithium-ion batteries, thermal management is an important element to consider. Through modeling and simulation, you can improve the design process by analyzing how heat is transferred within the energy source.

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Fanny Littmarck | July 18, 2014

When it comes to lithium-ion batteries, quality and safety are top priorities. Assessor of 20,000 batteries per year, Intertek Semko AB understands this perhaps better than anyone else.

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Mark Fowler | March 3, 2014

Polymer electrolyte membrane or proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells provide a potentially clean and portable source of power. This is of major interest to the transport industry as well as for power generation at fixed sites. COMSOL Multiphysics is a powerful simulation tool you can use to help understand and overcome PEM fuel cell design and construction challenges.

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Melanie Noessler | February 10, 2014

When designing electrochemical cells, we consider the three classes of current distribution in the electrolyte and electrodes: primary, secondary, and tertiary. We recently introduced the essential theory of current distribution. Here, we illustrate the different current distributions with a wire electrode example to help you choose between the current distribution interfaces in COMSOL Multiphysics for your electrochemical cell simulation.

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Edmund Dickinson | February 7, 2014

In electrochemical cell design, you need to consider three current distribution classes in the electrolyte and electrodes. These are called primary, secondary, and tertiary, and refer to different approximations that apply depending on the relative significance of solution resistance, finite electrode kinetics, and mass transport. Here, we provide a general introduction to the concept of current distribution and discuss the topic from a theoretical stand-point.

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Edmund Dickinson | June 27, 2013

During my time as a PhD student, a blue “Chemical Landmark” plaque was fitted to the building a couple of hundred yards down the road from my lab. The plaque commemorates the achievements of the researchers who made the lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery viable. Whether or not you know about the electrochemistry of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, you probably rely on one. We carry them around in our phones and laptops, and ride in cars and planes that use them for power. […]

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