WAE and Imperial College London to support thermal runaway research

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Imperial College London and Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) are working on a project to bridge the gap between thermofluid science and battery electrochemistry, developing a first-of-a-kind multiphase multiphysics model of battery failure via thermal runaway.

The model will consider gas dynamics and its interactions with electrochemical and thermal behaviors, with the goal of advancing the understanding of initiation and propagation of the thermal runaway processes and accelerate the design of countermeasures.

Dr Huizhi Wang, project lead at Imperial College London, said, “Understanding and modeling thermal runaway plays a crucial role in guiding the development of safer batteries but remains challenging due to the complexity of the process.”

Applying the multiphase multiphysics modeling toolsets will enable the design of safer battery packs with fewer iterations and physical tests. As part of this program, WAE will provide thermal runaway/propagation test data, while the battery team will provide technical knowledge and industrial experience on battery safety designs.

Rob Millar, head of electrification, WAE, added, “We are confident that the proposed study will bring tangible economic and environmental benefits and look forward to building on our long-term partnership with the team at Imperial College London.”


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Sam joined the UKi Media & Events automotive team in 2017. Having started out as assistant editor for a number of titles including Automotive Powertrain Technology International, Automotive Testing Technology International and Professional Motorsport World, he was appointed editor of PTI in 2020. Sam produces content for both the magazine and website.

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