Title: Considerations on the Chemical Toxicity of Contemporary Li-Ion Battery Electrolytes and Their Components
Citation: JOURNAL OF THE ELECTROCHEMICAL SOCIETY vol. 163 no. 6 p. A821-A830
Publication Year: 2016
JRC N°: JRC97427
ISSN: 0013-4651
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC97427
DOI: 10.1149/2.0171606jes
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: The objective of this study is to evaluate chemical hazards and risks associated with the accidental release of Li-ion battery electrolyte into an enclosed space. Because of the high volatility and reactivity of some components of contemporary Li-ion battery electrolytes this study focuses on the inhalation toxicity of released and generated gas phase components. These include evaporated solvents and HF as a decomposition product of the widely used LiPF6 salt. Our calculations show that at room temperature a small electrolyte release can result in the formation of a toxic atmosphere with concentration of the released compound reaching an acute exposure limit where irreversible and other serious health effects are expected to occur. For most contemporary electrolyte components this corresponds to a release of less than ca. 250 ml in a volume occupied by a medium-size car with a clearance of 1 m, i.e. ca. 62 m3. Further research, required as part of the thorough risk analysis, is identified.
JRC Directorate:Energy, Transport and Climate

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