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Lithium batteries for electric cars, advantages and disadvantages of Li-ion batteries, history of creation

Electric vehicles are increasingly taking their place among domestic and industrial vehicles. Due to the fact that hybrid cars use electricity from batteries as a power source, they are environmentally friendly. When choosing an electric car, motorists often ask themselves which battery is better and how to properly handle it during vehicle operation. As a result, its life and quality of work will be maximized.

What is a Lithium Battery Advantages and Disadvantages of Lithium Batteries, Lithium Ion Battery Applications in Electric Vehicle

What is a lithium battery

The first lithium batteries based on metallic lithium were developed in the 70s of the XX century. However, their use was problematic due to the high chemical activity of lithium. They quickly heated up and had the property of exploding or spontaneously igniting. The problem was eliminated only in the 90s, when pure lithium was replaced by the use of its ions.

Important! The battery is additionally equipped with a fuse, which allows you to eliminate excess voltage in an emergency.

Today, lithium-ion batteries (acid-acid batteries) are the most popular power sources for electric vehicles due to their ability to quickly store and release large amounts of energy. In electric vehicles, a lithium battery or a lithium-ion battery is most often used as a power source. Such a battery has negatively and positively charged electrodes, to which current collectors are connected by terminals.

A carbon matrix is ​​used as a negatively charged electrode (cathode), which may consist of graphite (natural or synthetic), carbon black, or carbon. The positively charged electrode (anode) is lithiated nickel or cobalt oxide, or a lithium-manganese compound. The cathode and anode are separated by a separator that has pores and is impregnated with electrolyte. The electrolyte is in a sealed capsule.

When free electrons are released on the separator, the process of substitution in the molecules of positively and negatively charged electrodes begins (lithium ions are built into the structure of the carbon matrix), which leads to the release of energy. The energy is fed through the terminals to the wires and then serves as a source of traction force for the electric vehicle. The Li-ion battery is completely sealed. This is necessary to avoid leakage of the electrolyte and contact of the electrodes with oxygen or water, which leads to complete deterioration of the battery.

It can be made in the form of a plane or a cylinder:

In a cylindrical assembly, the electrolyte and separator are twisted into a roll and connected to the cathode inside the sealed housing. The anode electrode is outside; when assembled in the form of planes, the plates are stacked one on top of the other and represent a set of full-fledged batteries.

Did you know? According to analysts from Bank of America and the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, by 2030 40% of all vehicles on the planet will be electric, and by 2050 – 95%. Already, China is planning to end the sale of gasoline and diesel vehicles in Beijing by 2020.

Advantages and disadvantages of Li-ion batteries (Lithium batteries)

Lithium-ion batteries are universal sources of electric current and are in very high demand all over the world. They have their pros and cons.

The positive aspects of the Li-ion drive include:

Environmental friendliness – does not pollute the environment when generating electricity. Long service life – up to 10 years with a guarantee. High energy density with low weight and dimensions – such batteries allow you to accumulate more charge and power the car with electricity for a longer time than their other varieties (for example, , NiCd and NiMH).Able to be quickly charged by high voltage current.Have low self-discharge — 4-6% in 30 days.No need to fully charge and discharge during commissioning.Allows use at -20 and +50°С.Does not require regular use – does not deteriorate during long-term storage. The stock of operating cycles (charge-discharge) is about 1000.

The disadvantages of lithium-ion batteries are:

High price. Sensitivity to overcharging or complete discharge (usually equipped with a special fuse). At temperatures below -20°C, the charge level decreases. When operating at temperatures above +50°C, there is a danger of overheating and damage to the battery. It does not charge well at low temperatures. If the case is not sealed, the lithium-ion battery is explosive. With the passage of time, the charge level decreases.

The use of lithium-ion batteries in electric vehicles

Most lithium-ion power supplies for hybrid and electric vehicles operate at 36V and produce 15kW of power. Modern batteries of this type can hold 0.8-2.6 kW / h per 1 kg of their weight, which is much more than other types of batteries.

The optimal charge level of such a power source is from 25 to 75%, which allows its owner not to worry too much about the level of overdischarge or overcharge (for comparison, a nickel-metal hydride battery has an optimal charge range of only 40 to 60%).

Modern technologies have made it possible to create such lithium-ion batteries, which, if necessary, can be replaced not completely, but in separate blocks, removing places where there is damage.

When using electric vehicles with a lithium power supply, the following rules must be observed

Charge the battery according to instructions; monitor the charge level; do not violate the temperature regime – for the battery not to degrade, the outer case of the battery should be cooled or heated if necessary; protect from shocks and strong vibrations, for which a shock-absorbing layer can be laid during installation; for long-term storage, the battery should be charged by 50% and should be at a temperature of 0 ° C; do not violate the tightness of the battery case – this could cause an explosion.

Did you know? In the spring of 2017, Indian government officials announced that the government plans to electrify all vehicles in the country by 2032.

In case of damage or expiration of the service life (when the energy consumption drops and this affects the driving time of the car), the Li-ion power supply can be replaced. The replacement procedure is quite lengthy and should be carried out in special facilities. After installing a new battery, it must be registered and configured through the on-board computer of the electric car.

After the battery can no longer be used to power an electric car, it can be disposed of at special collection points. It can also be used at home as an energy storage device for solar panels or wind turbines.

Li-ion power supply is by far the most popular option for use in electric and hybrid vehicles. Despite its relatively high cost, it has a number of advantages compared to other batteries (compactness, low weight with a large charge, durability), which makes the price-quality ratio optimal.

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