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Journal Article

Design and Thermal Analysis of a Passive Thermal Management System Using Composite Phase Change Material for Rectangular Power Batteries

A passive thermal management system (TMS) using composite phase change material (PCM) for large-capacity, rectangular lithium-ion batteries is designed. A battery module consisting of six Li-ion cells connected in series was investigated as a basic unit. The passive TMS for the module has three configurations according to the contact area between cells and the composite PCM, i.e., surrounding, front-contacted and side-contacted schemes. Firstly, heat generation rate of the battery cell was calculated using the Bernardi equation based on experimentally measured heat source terms (i.e. the internal resistance and the entropy coefficient). Physical and thermal properties such as density, phase change temperature, latent heat and thermal conductivity of the composite PCM were also obtained by experimental methods. Thereafter, thermal response of the battery modules with the three TMS configurations was simulated using 3D finite element analysis (FEA) modeling in ANSYS Fluent.
Technical Paper

Thermal Management of Power Batteries for Electric Vehicles Using Phase Change Materials: A Review

As one of the most crucial components in electric vehicles, power batteries generate abundant heat during charging and discharging processes. Thermal management system (TMS), which is designed to keep the battery cells within an optimum temperature range and to maintain an even temperature distribution from cell to cell, is vital for the high efficiency, long calendar life and reliable safety of these power batteries. With the desirable features of low system complexity, light weight, high energy efficiency and good battery thermal uniformity, thermal management using composite phase change materials (PCMs) has drawn great attention in the past fifteen years. In the hope of supplying helpful guidelines for the design of the PCM-based TMSs, this work begins with the summarization of the most commonly applied heat transfer enhancement methods (i.e., the use of thermally conductive particles, metal fin, expanded graphite matrix and metal foam) for PCMs by different researchers.