Propensity to self-heating ignition of open-circuit pouch lithium-ion battery pile on a hot boundary

Yanhui Liu, Peiyi Sun, Huichang Niu, Xinyan Huang, Guillermo Rein

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


© 2020 Elsevier Ltd The fire safety issue of Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries is an important obstacle for its market growth and applications. Although the open-circuit condition (e.g. storage, transport and disposal) accounts for the major part of battery lifespan, little research has investigated its self-ignition hazard during non-operating periods. In this work, we experimentally study the self-heating behavior of piled pouch Li-ion battery cells through the classical hot-plate experiments. Results show that the self-ignition of battery pile occurs under a hot plate temperature ranging from 199 °C to 265 °C, depending on the number of cells and environmental cooling. Thermal runaway always first occurs to the cell next to the hot plate and then propagates to upper cells. This critical temperature is increased by 20 °C under a good environmental cooling condition whereas it is reduced by 40 °C as the state of charge increases from 30% to 80%. Moreover, the critical plate temperature for self-ignition increases slightly with the height of battery pile, which is opposite to both hot-plate experiments of hydrocarbon materials and the oven experiments of battery. Therefore, the classical self-ignition theory may not be applicable for Li-ion batteries next to a hot boundary. This research reveals new self-ignition phenomena and helps understand the fire safety of Li-ion batteries in storage and transport.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFire Safety Journal
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020


  • Battery fire
  • Self-ignition
  • Size effect
  • Thermal runaway


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