Syntactic Foam Reducing The Risk of Fires In Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles are the future of transportation and exploration. The innovation of battery technology has paved the way for countless applications. There are many different types of materials, battery chemistry, and applications. Lithium-ion batteries are one subset of particular interest to us in terms of battery packaging, protection, and transportation. A prime example of this is the emerging market for syntactics in battery cell carriers. Syntactic materials have intrinsically excellent fire resistance properties compared to solid polymers due to their high hollow glass filler content. When combining this property with their insulative, lightweight and structural characteristics, syntactic foam provides a much lower density option that is being utilized in automotive, aerospace, and subsea battery carrier applications.

Syntactic foams offer critical material properties such as low thermal conductivity and low heat transfer. These features are being used to combat dangerous thermal runaway conditions that occur when lithium-ion batteries overheat and ignite. The low heat transfer and strength help contain cell-to-cell temperature runaway while the low flame, smoke and toxicity (FST) properties reduce the risk of fire during catastrophic events. While some companies are looking for ways to suppress fires once they have started, our approach is to contain the fire before it spreads. Engineered Syntactic Systems offers low FST materials in both epoxy and phenolic based matrices tested according to ASTM standards for attributes such as time to ignition, average heat release and smoke release rates. 

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