LG Chem has developed a flame-retardant plastic that can delay fires in electric vehicles
LG Chemhas developed a flame-retardant plastic material.
- The plastic material delays thermal runaway by around 400 seconds.
- This delay can help users to evacuate from the area.
This comes at a time when there have been several reports of electric vehicles burning in India, injuring several people and even resulting in deaths. A few companies have already announced a recall as the government cracks down on negligent companies.
While the new plastic material from LG Chem will not prevent fires, it will delay them by up to 400 seconds. As per the company, the plastic material from the company can prevent the spread of flames caused by thermal runaway for more than 400 seconds even at 1000-degree Celsius temperature. The company has claimed that this is 45 times better than its competitors.
What is thermal runaway?
Thermal runaway is the leading cause of fires in electric vehicles. It is a process wherein the temperature of the battery increases and releases energy, which in turn increases the temperature, ending up in a vicious cycle of temperature increase and eventually leading to a fire.
It becomes difficult to control the fire with water as lithium-ion batteries are highly reactive to water.
How will the plastic material from LG Chem help?
The plastic material developed by LG Chem will delay the process of thermal runaway by around 400 seconds, giving you time to evacuate and even try to extinguish the fire.
The plastic material has been developed using polyphenylene oxide (PPO), polyamide (PA) or commonly called nylon, and polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).
"Compared to general flame-retardant plastics, the new material can block heat for a longer period when it is applied to an electric vehicle’s battery pack cover thanks to its excellent heat resistance,” said LG Chem.
The company is currently working on patent applications for the new plastic material in South Korea, the United States and Europe. At the moment it is not known if the plastic material will be used by Indian electric vehicle makers.
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