Lithium-ion batteries were manufactured for the provision of high energy density. The lithium metal has great potential for providing power. The disposal of these batteries does not cause much harm. The LI-ion battery is much different from other batteries and it does require continuous cycling to prolong long. As lithium-ion in the batteries was introduced in 1991. To increase the energy density of the batteries the chemists decided to make the electrodes and separator thinner. This manufacturing change almost doubled the energy density of the battery.?
The lithium-ion is very reactive and a mild short will elevate the discharging process. The discharging energy is very low and a small amount of heat energy is released. When a major short occurs due to coverage of metal at one point it will allow the current to flow between the cathodes. This will cause the thermal runaway of the battery as the temperature increases due to current flow. There are many safety issues of lithium-ion batteries due to which the manufacturers are thinking to change the manufacturing process and design of the batteries.?
The lithium-ion batteries have a fast charging process. This process enhances the energy providing capacity of the batteries. As Li-ion batteries are very efficient so a little mistake in its charging or manufacturing process can lead to drastic effects. The users need many precautions to follow for the usage of these batteries.?
Contamination of reactive metals during the manufacturing process
During the manufacturing of the Li-ion batteries, the metal can be accumulated in the internal design of the batteries. The designers must avoid the use of these metal to avoid the accidents of the batteries. The contamination of such metals can an internal short circuit. Some of the reactive metals used in the manufacturing of these batteries are:
These metals when present in the batteries can lead to minor shorts that can elevate the self-discharging process of the batteries.
Deposit of metallic ions at one spot
The process of the coverage of the lithium ions at one spot can cause major short in the batteries. This short allows the current to flow between the anode and cathode of the batteries. This increases the temperature of the batteries and can lead to harmful defects in the batteries decreasing their lifetime. This process is also sometimes called as venting with flame. The value of currently produced due to deposition of ions is sufficient to cause thermal effects which result in thermal accidents.
The thermal chain reaction in the batteries
As many cells are connected in series in a battery. The thermal runaway increases the temperature of the cells. The heat of one cell can be transferred to another cell which can cause thermal instability of the batteries. A chain reaction can occur in one cell also which will make it thermally unstable. A complete pack of cells within a battery can be destroyed in just seconds. Sometimes the chain reaction is slow that can take a longer time to destroy the battery but once the thermal chain reaction is started it is difficult to stop it. The thermal runaway is the fastest process that causes a battery to destroy. In this process, each cell is consumed one-by-one.
What do you need to do if lithium battery accident happens?
The lithium battery accident happens due to the above-mentioned processes. The manufacturers and the chemists have advised many precautionary measures that can be taken if the Li-ion battery accident occurs. The new technology in this regard as been introduced. The use of cobalt and manganese with lithium has reduced many battery accidents. The use of manganese has increased the thermal stability of the batteries and increased the temperature stability up to 259 degrees Celsius. Manganese has low internal resistance and can provide high current easily but still, many battery accidents can occur.
Control the temperature of the batteries
The Li-ion batteries explode when the temperature increases and the chemicals in the batteries can catch fire. The temperature can reach up to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. The lead-acid, electrodes and the electrolyte can put the batteries on fire. So, you need to have a fire extinguisher to stop the burning of the batteries.
Keep the batteries away from water
Lithium metal is very reactive and can react with water. So, do not use water to stop the explosion of lithium. The explosion of lithium batteries can be stopped by using the Class D fire extinguisher. There is lithium in the batteries which when reacting with water form lithium hydroxide. The freshwater can conduct electricity as well. So, the potential of lithium and water will cause more fire and it will be difficult for you to stop it.??
Leave the room immediately
The lithium-ion batteries explode at a high temperature and can produce a lot of heat energy. When the thermal runaway process occurs it does not only increases the temperature the battery explodes and can the chunks of the battery can spread across the room. So, when you feel like that the explosion is occurring immediately leave the room and call for help.
Who can you ask for help if lithium battery accident happens?
The explosion of the lithium batteries increases the temperature of the surrounding. Sometimes you do not have the availability of proper tools to help you out from this harmful situation. You should immediately call the fire extinguisher team as they know the proper techniques to stop the thermal chain reaction occurring in the batteries.
The gas released during the venting of the cells in the battery is carbon dioxide which can cause breathing problems. So, you can call for help and do inform them that the fire occurred due to the explosion of lithium batteries. The team will reach you with the proper chemicals to stop the fire.
As the lithium batteries are available everywhere so there are chances of accidents everywhere. You must have fire extinguishers available at home that come in small packings in the market. You can use them if the drastic conditions does not occur.