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Computational modelling of structural batteries (STRUBA)
Start date: Jun 1, 2014, End date: May 31, 2019 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Competition in consumer electronics has pushed the boundaries of technological development towards miniaturization, with weight/size limitations and increasing power demands being the two most stringent requirements. Although almost all the components of any portable device become smaller, lighter and more powerful by the months, electrochemical technology is far from presenting us with the ideal battery. From a different perspective, the equation mobile device = casing + electronics + battery could be simplified by merging the structural function of the casing with that of the energy source of the battery into a structural battery. This approach would immediately reduce weight and size of our mobile devices.This project aims at investigating the effect of electrochemical-mechanical interactions on the mechanical performance of structural batteries. Understanding and controlling mechanical degradation in structural batteries is of prime importance given the dual structural-electrical function of these devices. In fact, the main concern when dealing with structural batteries is whether the internal stresses caused by external loads will influence the performance of the battery, and, conversely, whether the functioning of the battery will have a detrimental effect on its mechanical properties. The complexity of these processes can only be addressed with dedicated computational techniques. This project offers a unique opportunity for the design and implementation of the first multiphysics and multiscale computational framework for the analysis of structural batteries. Macroscale processes originating at the level of a basic components will be elucidated through physically-based constitutive laws.The overall impact of this project will be felt across many research communities. Apart from the energy storage community, the developed tools and procedures will influence research and development related to many fibre-reinforced composites.
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