Computer-Aided Engineering for Electric-Drive Vehicle Batteries
The Computer-Aided Engineering for Electric-Drive Vehicle Batteries (CAEBAT) project aims to accelerate the development and lower the cost of lithium-ion batteries for next-generation electric-drive vehicles (EDVs).
GM pack-level validation of CAEBAT tool using prototype for 24-cell module. Left: CAD geometry model. Right: FLUENT simulations. Images: Courtesy of GM
NREL enhancements to the framework functionality of cell domain models provided complete tool sets for CAEBAT partner simulation of all major cell form-factors (from left to right): stack pouch, wound cylindrical, and wound prismatic cells. Images: NREL
CD-adapco model construction showing external battery case and two variations of wound prismatic cell configuration for combined flow, thermal, and electrochemical simulation using CAEBAT tools. Images: Courtesy of CD-adapco
NREL's MSMD model quantifies the impacts of electrical/thermal pathway design on uneven charge-discharge kinetics in a wide range of large-format wound prismatic cells. Images: NREL
Thermal-electrochemical models of Li-ion battery cells and packs. Wound electrode cell performance simulation (top left); time evolution of short in a prismatic cell (top right); pack simulation with cooling (bottom). Images: Courtesy of EC Power
Project goals include:
- Developing engineering tools to design cells and battery packs
- Shortening the battery prototyping and manufacturing processes
- Improving overall battery performance, safety, and lifespan
- Reducing battery costs.
NREL brings its predictive computer simulation of lithium-ion batteries, known as the Multi-Scale Multi-Dimensional (MSMD) model framework, to the CAEBAT project. MSMD's modular, flexible architecture connects the physics of battery charge/discharge processes, thermal control, safety, and reliability in a computationally efficient manner. This allows independent development of submodels at the cell and pack levels.
After a competitive selection process, NREL awarded subcontracts worth $7 million to the following three industry teams:
- EC Power, Penn State University, Johnson Controls, Inc., and Ford
- General Motors, ANSYS, and ESim
- CD-adapco, Battery Design LLC, A123 Systems, and Johnson Controls Inc.
Each team is working independently to develop and validate modeling and design tools for EDV batteries, with an emphasis on integrating electrochemical, electrical, mechanical, and thermal physics. Teams are also exploring different chemistries, cell geometries, and battery pack configurations.
These industry partners are contributing 50% of project costs, bringing the overall budget to $14 million for three years.
In support of the CAEBAT project, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is developing an open-architecture software interface to link the models developed by different teams into the CAEBAT suite of tools. ORNL is also developing input-output interfaces to allow utilization of models across different platforms.
NREL's Publications Database offers a wide variety of documents related to the development of batteries and energy storage systems for EDVs. The following publications document CAEBAT project activities:
- Progress of the Computer-Aided Engineering of Electric Drive Vehicle Batteries (CAEBAT) (2013)
- Tools for Designing Thermal Management of Batteries in Electric Drive Vehicles (2013)
- Accelerating Electric Vehicle Battery Innovation with Multiphysics Simulation (2012)
- Fast-Charging Battery Development: Multiphysics Simulation Tools Power the Modeling of Thermal Management in Advanced Lithium-Ion Battery Systems for Electric Vehicles (2012)
- Accelerating Development of EV Batteries Through Computer-Aided Engineering (2012)
- Overview of Computer-Aided Engineering of Batteries and Introduction to Multi-Scale, Multi-Dimensional Modeling of Li-Ion Batteries (2012)
- Computer-Aided Engineering of Batteries for Designing Better Li-Ion Batteries (2012)