Electrical Characterization and Micro X-ray Computed Tomography Analysis of Next-Generation Silicon Alloy Lithium-Ion Cells

Gert Jan Berckmans, Lysander De Sutter, Algirdas Kersys, Akos Kriston, Mario Marinaro, Michael Kasper, Peter Axmann, Jelle Smekens, Margret Wohlfahrt-Mehrens, Andreas Pfrang, Joris Jaguemont, Joeri Van Mierlo, Noshin Omar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)


This study analyzed a prototype of a pouch cell containing silicon alloy anodes with the potential to significantly increase the energy density, resulting in improved autonomy for electric vehicles. An electrical characterization campaign was performed, resulting in three main observations. Firstly, measurements showed a high energy density, although a high lower cutoff voltage (3.0 V) was used due to the prototypical nature of the cells. Further optimization would allow a decrease of the lower cutoff voltage, resulting in an even higher energy density. Secondly, a large open-circuit voltage hysteresis was observed, increasing the complexity for equivalent circuit models. Thirdly, ballooning of the pouch cell was observed, most likely caused by gas formation. This leads to a loss of active surface area, significantly reducing the cell’s capacity. This third observation was more thoroughly investigated by 3D computed tomography, which showed mechanical deformation of the layers. An extensive literature review revealed that the addition of fluoroethylene carbonate (FEC) to the electrolyte enhances the cycling stability of silicon alloy batteries but leads to the production of CO 2 as a side reaction. Furthermore, the usage of external pressure was proposed and validated as a methodology to reduce the production of CO 2 while improving the cells’ performance.
Original languageEnglish
Article number43
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalWorld Electric Vehicle Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 19 Oct 2018


  • High energy density
  • Nickel-rich NMC
  • Silicon alloy

Cite this