Henkel Adhesive Technologies

Henkel Adhesive Technologies

How to improve electric vehicle efficiency and safety with battery heat management

Thermal management extends range, speeds production, and improves vehicle safety.



3 min.
EV battery controller PCB.

Thermal management is crucial to how a Li-ion battery performs, especially when used in the design and manufacturing of electric vehicles (EV).

Heat - and the most effective ways of controlling it - should be top of mind for all EV manufacturers. Using the right advanced materials, such as thermal interface materials, provides optimal heat management, which helps avoid reduced battery inefficiency and shorter battery service life. In some cases, without optimal heat management, batteries can even unexpectedly catch fire or experience a thermal runaway. This type of hazardous reaction can create imminent danger to the car, its occupants, and anything nearby.

Use of advanced materials can help optimize the design and production of EVs and their batteries, while also addressing critical issues like safety and regulatory compliance.

Heat dissipation to control costs

Excessive heat - a byproduct of both the charging and discharging cycles - can damage EV battery circuits and connection points, shorten range, and ultimately shorten service life. As EV batteries are both the most expensive and heaviest component in an EV, repairing and replacing a battery is not a trivial endeavor. Advanced materials such as thermal adhesives and gap fillers help transfer heat away from batteries to increase overall battery life while also helping battery manufacturers scale and minimize operating costs.

Compliant fire protection to ensure safety

EV battery manufacturers must face many challenges, including complying with stringent regulatory requirements for fire protection. Advanced materials enable safer and compliant manufacture through the use of epoxy fire-protection coatings and flame-retardant foams, and thermal propagation prevention (TPP) solutions help safeguard both the EV operation and the vehicle’s occupants.

Two-component epoxy technology can be applied to the inside or outside of a battery lid to create a thermal insulating layer that can provide fire resistance of up to 1,100º C for up to 10 minutes. And cavities between cells in battery packs can be filled with advanced polyurethane-based rigid foam to increase flame-retardant properties and block cell-to-cell heat transfer.

Battery shape to optimize design

The shapes of EV batteries are important engineering choices to support both design and power density. Batteries are typically cylindrical or prism-shaped, but cars are not. A need to maximize battery size to fit a limited space while also designing for an aesthetically pleasing vehicle presents difficult design challenges.

Advanced materials such as custom-tailored gap fillers can provide carmakers with additional flexibility to better match a variety of battery and car shapes and sizes when creating cell-to-pack or cell-to-chassis designs. These gap fillers are suitable for mass production due to high dispense rates and fast application times. They also provide ample heat dissipation, with thermal conductivity levels of 1 to 7 watts per meter Kelvin (W/m-K).

Advanced materials optimize EV performance

EV battery manufacturers need to collaborate with advanced material suppliers to better optimize EV battery performance, safety, and design. With insights on how best to optimize your specific battery production needs, and by selecting the right advanced materials, you can plan for the road ahead to accelerate EV battery performance and drive the future of EV construction and adoption.

To read more about how Henkel solutions can help you optimize the design and production of EVs and their batteries, download 'Beneath the Battery: How Advance Materials Enhance EV Battery Design and Production.'

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