Fire protection for Li-ion battery energy storage systems

siemens fire safety application li-ion battery energy storage protection

Li-ion battery storage facilities contain high energy batteries combined with highly flammable electrolytes. Li-ion batteries are also prone to quick ignition. Fire in such storage facilities can have a significant financial impact on the organization. There is a need to detect both electrolyte fire and electrolyte gas early. Rapid extinguishing is also essential and can be ensured by the use of automated extinguishing systems. Hence, critical situations can be prevented through early detection and rapid extinguishing. As of December 2019 Siemens is the first and only company that is certified by VdS for our fire protection concept for stationary Li-ion battery energy storage systems.  

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Overview

Protecting what matters

Since their market launch in the early 1990s, lithium-ion batteries have found their way into a wide variety of applications including stationary energy storage in smart grids. This is an application that is predicted to grow rapidly, not least because of the increasing expansion of renewable energy generation and the associated decentralization and stabilization requirements of such energy sources. Li-ion battery storage systems cover a large range of applications from generation to consumption, helping to stabilize frequency and voltage, and balance variations in supply and demand.

Stationary lithium-ion battery energy storage systems – a manageable fire risk

Li-ion batteries combine high energy materials with highly flammable electrolytes. Early and reliable fire detection is therefore a must when designing fire protection systems for Li-ion battery systems. Rapid extinguishing is also essential and can be ensured by the use of automated extinguishing systems using an appropriate agent.

Earliest possible detection with aspirating smoke detection FDA241

The FDA241 detects electrolyte vapor early and reliably, due to the patented dual-wavelength optical detection technology. In accordance with normative requirements, two independent FDA241s are required to trigger the activation of the automated extinguishing system. The positioning of the aspiration points must take the airflow generated by the air conditioning system into account. The FDA241 is the ideal solution for early detection of electrical fires. In addition to controlling the automated extinguishing system, the fire protection system triggers all other necessary control functions.

Safe and sustainable fire suppression and extinguishing with Sinorix N2

Sinorix N2 extinguishing systems extinguish electrical fires, contain initial thermal runaway, stop propagation of thermal runaway and reliably prevent the spread of secondary fires. Fire extinguishing and suppression systems for this risk are to be designed as total flooding systems with remaining oxygen concentration below 11.3 % [remaining oxygen concentration of 11.3 % corresponds to 45.2 % extinguishing agent concentration, the EN15004 agent concentration for nitrogen for class high hazard risks] [depending on the electrolyte used, higher extinguishing concentrations may be necessary*]. A holding time of 30 minutes not only allows the fire brigade time to react, but also deters possible delayed runaways.

*Our tests have shown that the lower the remaining oxygen concentration, the better the protection against explosive combustion of electrolyte vapor.

White paper: Fire protection for Li-ion battery energy storage systems

Li-ion batteries combine high energy materials with highly flammable electrolytes. Early and reliable fire detection is therefore a must when designing fire protection systems for Li-ion battery systems. Rapid extinguishing is also essential and can be ensured by the use of automated extinguishing systems using an appropriate agent. This paper discusses the development of a managed-risk fire protection concept for stationary Li-ion battery energy storage systems.

Rising worldwide energy demand and the production from renewable sources bring new challenges to the table. Today, these challenges can be addressed with energy storage systems, which are based on high-performance lithium-ion batteries. But the use of such storage systems carries new risks. Would you like to know how you can use these emerging technologies safely to minimize the risk of fire

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