Progressing the EV battery is a decades-long research project that continues to yield more advanced technology seemingly every day. And with millions of electric and hybrid vehicles on the roads and more to come with President Biden's ambitious goal of reaching half of US vehicles to be electric, advancing the various elements that comprise an EV battery is mission critical.
As manufacturers strive to make batteries cheaper and more powerful, automakers, in turn, grapple with the dangers of lithium batteries, such as fires that lead to recalls and potentially deadly outcomes.
Donaldson is among the manufacturers combating this challenge, a prominent exhibitor at The Battery Show and E/HV Tech Expo held in Novi, Michigan September 14-16. Amidst their suite of solutions, their proprietary battery venting technology protects battery packs from external contaminants, providing venting to achieve pressure equalization for day-to-day vehicle operation.
With The Battery Show on the near horizon, I had the chance to sit down with Shane Campbell, Product Manager at Donaldson's Integrated Venting Solutions, to deeper dive into their innovative venting solutions, which will be displayed at their booth during the show.
JM: What are you interested in learning about and experiencing at The Battery Show this year?
SC: Our Donaldson team is excited to reconnect with the automotive industry in person. There are a lot of great speakers scheduled for the conference portion of The Battery Show this year. We are ready to learn and network with attendees.
Based on the conference schedule, I'm interested in learning about early detection of thermal runaway events, advancement in thermal management systems of vehicle battery packs, the impact of fast charging battery packs, and how simulation is used to evaluate and test battery packs vent designs.
Destructive thermal runaway testing is time-consuming and expensive to conduct, so simulation is an innovative way to create and study potential thermal runway scenarios and their impact on the design of different vehicle battery pack vents.
What can Expo Center visitors expect to see and hear about at Donaldson's booth (831)?
Visitors to the Donaldson booth will be greeted by a team of engineers and product managers from our Integrated Venting Solutions team. We'll be showcasing our powertrain vents and dual-stage battery pack vents for electric and hybrid vehicles.
We will educate visitors about all of the components on a vehicle that we can help protect with our venting solutions. Samples of the vents will be available to help visitors gain a better understanding of how they work.
Our primary focus will be on our two dual-stage battery pack vent solutions – Burst and the new Flex – and explaining how they differ in functionality and the benefits of each.
Both provide a barrier against contaminants, offer continuous pressure equalization to help protect a vehicle battery housing from over-or under-pressure, expel damp air for effective ventilation, and assist in degassing from inside the battery.
There will be an interactive demo of our Dual-Stage Flex solution at our booth, so attendees can feel the increase from pressure equalization airflow to degassing airflow. The exercise is intended to help participants visualize the process happening inside a vehicle battery.
Where do you see the future of battery venting in electric and hybrid vehicles heading?
As the industry has evolved, so needs to shift to lighter and thinner battery pack materials, which can also mean lower pressure resistance. Donaldson's vents can accommodate this adjustment with lower release pressure for active venting within a vehicle.
I think the industry will continue experimenting with different materials since battery packs can often be one of the heaviest and most expensive components of a car.
We also continue to look at faster evacuation of pressure and heat during a degassing event. Our product engineers continually test and improve our product designs with this in mind. As mentioned, simulation is an emerging testing method that may be beneficial from a time and budget standpoint moving forward.
To schedule a meeting with Donaldson at the upcoming event, register for The Battery Show here and reach out to [email protected].