Determining the limits and effects of high-rate cycling on lithium iron phosphate cylindrical cells

Justin Holloway*, Faduma Maddar, Michael Lain, Melanie Loveridge, Mark Copley, Emma Kendrick, David Greenwood

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The impacts on battery cell ageing from high current operation are investigated using commercial cells. This study utilised two tests–(i) to establish the maximum current limits before cell failure and (ii) applying this maximum current until cell failure. Testing was performed to determine how far cycling parameters could progress beyond the manufacturer’s recommendations. Current fluxes were increased up to 100 C cycling conditions without the cell undergoing catastrophic failure. Charge and discharge current capabilities were possible at magnitudes of 1.38 and 4.4 times, respectively, more than that specified by the manufacturer’s claims. The increased current was used for longer term cycling tests to 500 cycles and the resulting capacity loss and resistance increase was dominated by thermal fatigue of the electrodes. This work shows that there is a discrepancy between manufacturer-stated current limits and actual current limits of the cell, before the cell undergoes catastrophic failure. This presumably is based on manufacturer-defined performance and lifetime criteria, as well as prioritised safety factors. For certain applications, e.g., where high performance is needed, this gap may not be suitable; this paper shows how this gap could be narrowed for these applications using the testing described herein.

Original languageEnglish
Article number57
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Battery aging
  • Cell failure
  • Cycle life
  • High rate cycling
  • Lithium ion battery
  • Thermal fatigue

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrochemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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