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Energy Research at Warwick

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Research News

Wed 06 Dec '17
Interview with a researcher: Mel Loveridge

The International Automotive Research Centre at WMG houses a unique battery research facility. Here researchers not only design batteries, but can manufacture multiple cells in their battery chemistry scale-up line and test them. In the small but bomb-proof Battery Abuse Centre, these cells undergo trial by fire, penetration, overcharging – often with dramatic results. Mel Loveridge is working on adding a further capability to the facility, battery forensics.
Mel’s background is in biochemistry and materials science. She began her research career as a materials scientist before moving into the field of electrochemistry. Her interest is in the materials that are used to create anodes and cathodes, particularly how they are manufactured and how they degrade.

Under her project FAB (Forensic Analysis of Batteries) Mel and her team can take existing batteries – for example, the infamous Samsung Galaxy Note 7 and subject them to numerous tests including X-ray Tomography, Electron Microscopy and Diamond Light Source Ptychography to diagnose why and how they fail. These results can then be fed back into the manufacturing process to improve the quality of batteries and make them safer. Mel has been working on other interesting avenues in battery diagnostics including in-situ sensors that can not only detect the temperature fluctuations inside a battery, but also pinpoint differences in temperature in different areas of the cell...

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