Derek N. Wong

Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Materials Science and Engineering


Materials Science and Engineering

First Advisor

David A Jr


The US Navy is actively developing all electric fleets, raising serious questions about what is required of onboard power supplies in order to properly power the ship’s electrical systems. This is especially relevant when choosing a viable power source to drive high power propulsion and electric weapon systems in addition to the conventional loads deployed aboard these types of vessels. Especially when high pulsed power loads are supplied, the issue of maintaining power quality becomes important and increasingly complex. Conventionally, a vessel’s electrical power is generated using gas turbine or diesel driven motor-generator sets that are very inefficient when they are used outside of their most efficient load condition. What this means is that if the generator is not being utilized continuously at its most efficient load capacity, the quality of the output power may also be effected and fall outside of the acceptable power quality limits imposed through military standards. As a solution to this potential problem, the Navy has proposed using electrochemical storage devices since they are able to buffer conventional generators when the load is operating below the generator’s most efficient power level or able to efficiently augment a generator when the load is operating in excess of the generator’s most efficient power rating. Specifically, the US Navy is interested in using commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) lithium-ion batteries within an intelligently controlled energy storage module that could act as either a prime power supply for on-board pulsed power systems or as a backup generator to other shipboard power systems. Due to the unique load profile of high-rate pulsed power systems, the implementation of lithium-ion batteries within these complex systems requires them to be operated at very high rates and the effects these things have on cell degradation has been an area of focus. There is very little published research into the effects that high power transient or pulsed loading has on the degradation mechanisms of secondary lithium-ion cells. Prior to performing this work, it was unclear if the implementation of lithium-ion batteries in highly transient load conditions at high rate would accelerate cell degradation mechanisms that have been previously considered as minor issues. This work has focused on answering these previously unanswered questions. In early experiments performed here, COTS lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) cells were studied under high-rate, transient load conditions and it was found that their capacity fade deviated from the traditional linear behavior and exponentially declined until no charge could be accepted when recharge was attempted at high rate. These findings indicated that subjecting LFP chemistries to transient, high rate charge/discharge profiles induced rapid changes in the electrode/electrolyte interface that rendered the cells useless when high rate recharge was required. These findings suggested there was more phenomena to learn about how these cells degraded under high rate pulsed conditions before they are fielded in Naval applications. Therefore, the research presented here has been focused on understanding the degradation mechanisms that are unique to LFP cells when they are cycled under pulsed load profiles at high charge and discharge rates. In particular, the work has been focused on identifying major degradation reactions that occur by studying the surface chemistry of cycled electrode materials. Efforts have been performed to map the impedance evolution of both cathode and anode half cells, respectively, using a novel three electrode technique that was developed for this research. Using this technique, the progression of degradation has been mapped using analysis of differential capacitance spectrums. In both the three electrode EIS mapping and differential capacitance analysis that has been performed, electrical component models have been developed. The results presented will show that there are unique degradation mechanisms induced through high rate pulsed loading conditions that are not normally seen in low rate continuous cycling of LFP cells.


Lithium-ion battery, Pulsed power sytems


Engineering | Materials Science and Engineering


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington