Short Bytes: Lithium-ion battery explosions don’t surprise us anymore. To get rid of this danger, a team of researchers at Stanford University has designed a battery that has an inbuilt fire extinguisher. It uses triphenyl phosphate (TPP) as a flame retardant, which is stored inside a shell that melts when the battery gets too hot. Such applications are surely encouraging as they make our Lithium-ion battery-powered devices more secure.Samsung Galaxy Note 7’s explosions kept on causing a stir in the global smartphone market for few months in 2016. Just yesterday, the company confirmed that the explosions were being caused due to some issue in the batteries. This incident was preceded by multiple hoverboard fires in 2015.
Lithium-ion batteries used in these gadgets, despite their capacity to hold the charge for a longer time, are prone to explosion due to their spiraling swiss roll structure. Now, to minimize the risks of such fires and explosions, the researchers at Stanford University have devised a lithium-ion battery that has an inbuilt fire extinguisher.
For this purpose, flame retardant triphenyl phosphate (TPP) is used, which is stored inside a shell that contains electrolyte fluid. TPP is a popular organophosphorus-based flame retardant. The protective shell is made of polyvinylidene fluoride–hexafluoropropylene (PVDF-HFP), which is insoluble in electrolytes of lithium-ion batteries.
When the temperature of the battery rises, the shell melts at 150 °C and releases the chemical. In the laboratory tests, the battery fires were extinguished in 0.4 seconds.
The researchers expect that this type of mechanism can be used in other high-energy storage devices too.
So, did you find this futuristic battery with inbuilt fire extinguisher interesting? Don’t forget to share your views and feedback.