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Batteries & Fuel Cells Blog Posts

Advancing Vanadium Redox Flow Batteries with Modeling

December 21, 2017

The chemical energy in vanadium redox flow batteries is contained in liquid electrolytes and stored in external tanks. They can be used to improve grid energy storage and renewable energy.

Modeling Electrochemical Processes in a Solid-State Lithium-Ion Battery

December 7, 2016

Traditional lithium-ion batteries use an electrolyte based on a flammable liquid solvent, which can cause them to catch fire if they overheat. In recent years, nonflammable solid electrolytes have been investigated as an alternative to improve battery design and safety. Optimizing this technology for industrial applications, however, requires a better understanding of the electrochemical processes inside the device. Simulation serves as a valuable tool for this purpose, helping to realize the use of solid-state lithium-ion batteries in the near future.

How to Model Short Circuits in Lithium-Ion Batteries

October 25, 2016

A short circuit in a battery is bad news: the chemical energy stored in the battery is lost as heat, rather than being used to power a device. Short circuits create intense heat, which can degrade battery materials or lead to fires or explosions due to thermal runaway. To avoid conditions that lead to short circuits in devices and ensure that short circuits do not cause unsafe operating conditions, we can study lithium-ion battery designs with the COMSOL Multiphysics® software.

How to Model Electrochemical Resistance and Capacitance

August 24, 2016

Resistive and capacitive effects are fundamental to the understanding of electrochemical systems. The resistances and capacitances due to mass transfer can be represented through physical equations describing the corresponding fundamental phenomena, like diffusion. Further, when considering the resistive or capacitive behavior of double layers, thin films, and reaction kinetics, such effects can be treated simply through physical conditions relating electrochemical currents and voltages. Lastly, resistances and capacitances from external loading circuits can easily be represented in the COMSOL Multiphysics® software.

Building an App to Optimize the Design of an SOFC Stack

August 23, 2016

Today, guest blogger Matteo Lualdi of resolvent ApS, a COMSOL Certified Consultant, discusses the benefits of creating a simulation app to analyze a solid oxide fuel cell stack. For many businesses, numerical modeling and simulation are valuable tools at various stages of the design workflow, from product development to optimization. Apps further extend the reach of these tools, hiding complex multiphysics models beneath easy-to-use interfaces. Here’s a look at one such example: a solid oxide fuel cell stack app.

Li-Ion Battery: Heterogeneous Alternative to the Newman Model

April 13, 2016

The Newman model and its variants form the standard theory used to successfully predict the behavior of lithium-ion battery design under a range of operating conditions. In the Newman model, the geometry of the porous structure of the battery electrodes is not described in detail; instead, typical averaged dimensions are used as input to describe the electrodes as homogeneous and isotropic materials. But how accurate is this approach compared to a detailed, heterogeneous geometric model? Let’s find out.

Using Simulation in the Race Against Corrosion

December 28, 2015

Corrosion is one of the most serious factors affecting the transportation industry. In an effort to minimize its impact, a German research institute and the manufacturers of Mercedes-Benz joined forces to investigate the corrosion occurring in automotive rivets and sheet metal. Using COMSOL Multiphysics simulation, they were able to study corrosion’s effects on car components.

Does the Current Flow Backwards Inside a Battery?

November 25, 2015

During the discharge of a battery, the current in the circuit flows from the positive to the negative electrode. According to Ohm’s law, this means that the current is proportional to the electric field, which says that current flows from a positive to negative electric potential. But what happens inside the battery? Does the current flow from negative to positive electric potential? This blog post explains the potential profile inside a battery during discharge and recharge.


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