Over the past decade, lithium-ion batteries have become a part of almost every aspect of everyday life. from smartphones, watches and in general all consumer Electronicsuntil Large high capacity batteries for electric vehicles, it is the most widespread chemical how many are available. Although the development of technology Safety is always the most important feature to be protectedthe risk of short circuit or thermal runaway And so the fire inherent in technology is always present. These are the reasons why lithium batteries can catch fire.
Lithium-ion batteries present some safety risks if not taken care of properly, The principle of operation of lithium-ion batteries makes them prone to combustion. Hence there is a need to implement safety measures by the manufacturers and follow certain precautions by their users.
inside lithium battery
Broadly speaking, lithium-ion batteries work storing energy in chemical form and releasing it in electrical form through a series of electrochemical reactions. To achieve this, its interior consists of a series of components. cathode The electrode is formed by positively charged particles. anode It consists of negatively charged particles. between them is placed a liquid electrolyte solution Through which lithium ions flow from the anode to the cathode. It is this movement of ions that sets up an electric current within the battery.
Another important battery component, often left out of the simplest description, is separator, It is a thin, porous membrane that separates the anode from the cathode. In this way, the separator allows the movement of ions between the anode and cathode without the two terminals physically touching each other, which can lead to a short circuit.
In particular, one of the main causes of fires inside lithium-ion batteries is The separator that separates the anode and cathode is damaged, In the event that this component breaks down, a short circuit will be created, as the anode and cathode come into contact. When this happens, the electrolytic solution, which contains a range of organic solvents, is likely to overheat and eventually ignite.
As they move between electrodes, lithium ions pass through what are known as electrochemical deposits forming dendrites, which are small, hard tree-like structures that develop as needle-like projections. These structures are responsible for perforating the separator.
Beyond punctures and breakages, thermal runaway is another main cause of explosions and battery fires. This is a phenomenon where high external temperatures can cause exothermic reactions within the battery itself, which in turn raises its temperature further. This self-reinforcement cycle that leads to overheating can eventually lead to an explosion.
Today, lithium batteries power almost every electronic device around us and even those that transport us, Safety precautions are a primary objective for its manufacturers, While batteries are largely safe on small scales because they are manufactured in large quantities, the potential for increased number of incidents of security breaches increases. The generalization of these batteries in electric vehicles as well means that this trend continues to grow.
To ensure a more secure future, there are a series of paths That chemists and engineers can take for the technical development of these batteries. One solution may be to explore new ways to ensure your safety, such as Safe loading techniques and packaging and attachment systems,
Even though the goal is to achieve batteries with higher energy densities, faster charging rates, and minimal degradation, manufacturers know that safety must be a priority in the development and manufacturing process.