Experimental study on thermal runaway risk of 18650 lithium ion battery under side-heating condition

Huang Li, Haodong Chen, Guobin Zhong, Yu Wang, Qingsong Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To simulate the heat transfer process between lithium-ion batteries (LIBs), an electric heater with the same size and shape as LIB in this work is used to trigger thermal runaway event. The effect of state of charge (SOC), the power of heater, the cell spacing on thermal behavior of LIB was investigated as well the amount of transferred heat between the heater and LIB was calculated. The results indicate that 50% SOC is an unstable state for LIB, that a stronger jet flame becomes more likely when the SOC of LIB is higher than 50%. Additionally, the increased spacing, lower heating power and SOC can contribute to mitigate the severity of thermal runaway behavior. Further, the dominant path of heat transfer between the heater and LIB will also vary with operating conditions. The heat conduction through air is the main heat transfer path in tests with lower heating power. However, heat radiation will replace heat conduction as the primary heat transfer mode when there is a large temperature difference between the heater and LIB in tests with higher heating power. Understanding the leading heat transfer path between LIBs can provide valuable guidelines for the safety design of lithium-ion battery modules.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-129
JournalJournal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries
Early online date13 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019


  • Lithium ion battery safety
  • Thermal runaway
  • Side-heating
  • State of charge
  • electric heater


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