Thermal, Mechanical, and Electrochemical Analysis of Li-Ion Batteries for Low-Temperature Space Applications

  • Amani Shaheen Alhammadi

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


The main challenge that hinders lithium-ion batteries in space applications is their low performance at subzero temperatures. Such low performance is primarily due to the low ionic conductivity and freezing of the electrolyte, leading to the loss of battery capacity. This research contributes to the advancement of lithium-ion batteries for low temperature and space applications by developing a new approach that combines different analytical methods to analyze the factors that lead to the poor performance of lithium-ion batteries in subzero temperature environments by considering the cathode-electrolyte interphase layer which is rarely undertaken by researchers as compared to the solid-electrolyte interphase at the anode. This research also contributes to the facilitation of the use of lithium-ion batteries in such environments by mitigating the effect of low temperature through providing a novel, feasible, and practical solution, focusing on the improvement of the inert materials of the battery rather than the active materials, which have been extensively tackled by researchers. A combination of active and passive heating is proposed to develop a reliable thermal management for lithium-ion batteries. A thin film heater is fabricated to warm up the battery at subzero temperatures. Furthermore, a new insulation material is proposed to fabricate a protection case to insulate the battery from cold environments and decrease the power consumption by the heater. Experimental tests are conducted by employing electrochemical characterization analysis to investigate thermal, mechanical, and electrochemical behavior of the battery subjected to a low-temperature environment. Electrochemical characterization tests including Cyclic Voltammetry (CV), Electrochemical Impedance Spectra (EIS), Galvanostatic Charge-Discharge, and cycling performance are used to evaluate different performance criteria such as current density, internal resistance, capacity loss, and rate capability of the battery. Material characterization methods such as X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), and X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) are performed to reveal the main factors that induce the electrochemical behavior of the battery under low-temperature environments. In these methods, criteria such as structural integrity of the battery and its components in terms of material degradation, swelling, damage, deformation, deflection, and fracture are used in the performance evaluation of the battery.
Date of AwardDec 2021
Original languageAmerican English


  • Lithium-ion battery; half-cell
  • full-cell
  • subzero temperature; CEI; LiFePO4; electrochemical; thin-film heater; polyimide; polyether ether ketone; PEEK.

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