Lithium Batteries: Understanding the Technology, Hazards, and Safety Risks

Lithium Batteries: Understanding the Technology, Hazards, and Safety Risks

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COEH CE - Alan: Welcome, everybody. Come on in, Find a seat. We get started at the top of the hour. COEH CE - Alan: Okay, it is the top of the hour. COEH CE - Alan: and so welcome everybody. My name is Alan Bar, with Coeh, Northern California, and I'm. Sitting in for Michelle Today it's my pleasure to welcome you all to

COEH CE - Alan: another presentation in our Webinar series. COEH CE - Alan: If you're logging in today with your registration email, you will receive a link to an evaluation form that qualify you for a certificate of completion worth one continuing education contact hour. COEH CE - Alan: You can join us next week for another. Webinar on the Fifteenth Wednesday Economics research updates from the University of Michigan.

COEH CE - Alan: You can register for that and other many other upcoming webinars COEH CE - Alan: at COEH CE - Alan: forward slash webinars COEH CE - Alan: for today's Webinar. You will be muted during the presentation. COEH CE - Alan: But if you'd like to ask questions. COEH CE - Alan: please do so and enter them into the Q. And a. Online Q. And a. Box. We'll say some time at the end of the presentation to address those questions. COEH CE - Alan: The Webinar is being recorded.

COEH CE - Alan: and will be made available along with past Webinars on the Coh Northern California, Youtube Channel. COEH CE - Alan: Please like and subscribe to our channel to help us continue to grow it. COEH CE - Alan: Today's Webinar, the title of the Talks Lithium Batteries, understanding the technology hazards and safety risks.

COEH CE - Alan: It's presented by our speaker today, Paul Harper, Mba. COEH CE - Alan: a little bit about Paul. COEH CE - Alan: He is principal and owner of Harper, consulting Llc in Scott, Snow, Arizona. COEH CE - Alan: He has over 35 years of experience in areas connected to product, stewardship and sustainability, including environmental occupational health and safety and risk management COEH CE - Alan: he served in corporate and senior consulting roles, working with numerous global companies across a broad spectrum of industries. Most recently is she a sustainability officer with a global leader in recycling and energy transformation. COEH CE - Alan: else experience with battery spans the life cycle battery. He's worked in mining and extractive industries, producing battery, raw materials

COEH CE - Alan: for global manufacturer. COEH CE - Alan: Excuse me for a global manufacturer of batteries. COEH CE - Alan: producing virtually every battery, chemistry available today in data centers, telecommunications and power management defining the safe use of batteries, and finally, in the recycling of batteries for mental value and plastic reclamation and reuse.

COEH CE - Alan: And with all of that, it's my pleasure to hand Mike over to our speaker, Paul Harper. Paul Harper: Thank you, Alan. Hello, everybody. Thank you for spending some time today. We're gonna go through some material for about the next 45 min or so, and then, as Allen said at the end, we'll have, you know, 10 or 15 min available for questions Paul Harper: that you may have during the course of it, and Allen will be keeping track of those. Paul Harper: The things we're gonna go through today is we're gonna talk about. Obviously lithium batteries. But we're gonna talk about lithium battery, chemistries and technology. What does a lithium battery look like, and and how does it work? And why is it hazard? And we'll talk about what those specific hazards are, what concerns us about them. So we understand what it is we're trying to protect against in their in their use.

Paul Harper: Then we're gonna kind of look at different Paul Harper: facets of battery use and battery management through the life cycle of a lithium battery in particular, when we use them when we transport them, and when we collect and dispose of those through whatever Mac mechanism. Paul Harper: then we'll move on to what are some of the applicable standards that we consider in the use and transportation, collection and disposal of batteries. And in particular, we're going to focus on some of the buyers Paul Harper: fire standards that apply to those batteries, and last, we'll leave you with some resources and further information that you can get further information on these Paul Harper: if you want to if you want to learn more. Paul Harper: so what that will kind of lead into this Paul Harper: batteries, batteries, batteries, and more batteries. There are lithium batteries in as as well as many other chemistries, and basically every form factor that you need, every application is going to have a specific form factor up there in the upper left hand column we see a a 12 bolt car battery form factor. We see the you know, kind of double a triple a/C Paul Harper: form factors that we use lithium batteries. In. We see the button cells that are lithium batteries, the the cr batteries. They go in

Paul Harper: everything from calculators to what watches and different apparatus is to power them, and then, of course, large format storage batteries, that you might see these other other large ones here Paul Harper: that are going into large formats for battery, storage, and bottom line is a battery is an in energy storage device. It's something that we put energy into. It collects that energy, and we use it to Paul Harper: power to draw on when we need power, and then recharge those batteries when when they're empty, to give us more capacity and continuing capacity. Paul Harper: And there's a multitude of existing and emerging Paul Harper: battery chemistry. We've been using batteries for, you know centuries, and starting with the the ones that Most people are familiar with the old lead acid batteries.

Paul Harper: and then, of course, Nicad and the nickel series of batteries Paul Harper: outgoing batteries that we use all the time, and that if you've got kids you use way too many of. And then, of course, now we've moved into the Lithium Battery series and the whole idea behind batteries and the whole advancement of batteries is the trade off between energy density Paul Harper: and the volume Metric density. We want more power density in a smaller package. Paul Harper: and these advancing as we move into lithium series batteries. As we look further on down the line into metal sulfur metal air batteries. Paul Harper: Those those are trying to get more energy density in a smaller form factor in a smaller package that enables it for greater use. Paul Harper: The ones we're gonna focus on today are the lithium batteries, and we're going to talk about both lithium batteries and lithium Ion batteries, because it's important to understand the distinctions between them and the different hazards that we've got. Paul Harper: Now.

Paul Harper: then, the next thing I want to talk about, though is is is the different chemistries in there, and within we see a number of different lithium ion, chemistries, lithium ion with manganese. Paul Harper: some with cobalt, some with B annual chloride. But within any one of those Paul Harper: there's going to be multiple chemical components, and it's going to vary by manufacturer and Paul Harper: by by battery type. So you may have a lithium Ion lithium, iron, phosphate, battery, or lithium manganese battery that Paul Harper: uses those base metals. But for any one

Paul Harper: battery there's multiple components, and there may be very different ratios of the the chemical components that are in there, and the thing about a lithium Ion battery in Paul Harper: importantly, that we'll talk about is lithium. Metal itself is not a major component of a lithium Ion battery. There is a small amount of elemental lithium in there, but very little that's not. There's not a lot. Paul Harper: The other thing that we want to recognize is that new chemistries are being developed and patented every year. There is a continual Paul Harper: move to develop smaller, more powerful batteries and battery technology, but energy storage solutions. And so new chemistries are being developed every day, and different components that enable those strategies like a graphene matrix to Paul Harper: give more surface area and and create greater energy. Density and and battery are being developed and deployed all the time. So we talk about today

Paul Harper: are are going to change over time, but these basic ones will still be out there in some form or fashion for the foreseeable future. Paul Harper: So how do we use batteries? Paul Harper: We use them everywhere. We use them in our homes. We use them in our businesses. We see them in electric vehicles and the emerging markets around those. We'll talk about those a little bit. They also get used in a variety of then commercial and industrial applications, data centers. Paul Harper: power storage centers. These are very important areas, and then we get into battery. Of course, battery manufacturers and battery recyclers Paul Harper: the Paul Harper: Blue arrow on the left. There is is meant to say, to talk about the density of batteries that are present in a given area, because that'll that'll emerge here as a theme

Paul Harper: in the the level of hazard that you have to protect against, You know, home in a business. They're relatively low density. They're in this cell phone. They're in the computer that I'm: I'm using right now. But there's not any others in this room Paul Harper: in businesses. They're going to be relatively low density of the number of batteries, and where they sit. But as we go down in these others we get much more Paul Harper: dense populations of these in data centers. There's there's lots of batteries in in the server racks that they're backing up power storage centers even more denser configuration manufacturing, of course, and recycling, of course, even denser Paul Harper: kind of Paul Harper: denser populations of the batteries Paul Harper: on the other hand, the proximity of those batteries to something that is combustible, and the level of control that we've got over. It is kind of in the in the opposite direction, right in a home. There's a lot of combustible material in there. If that battery Paul Harper: catches on fire that is gonna be proximate to that that it can.

Paul Harper: that it can ignite involved in a fire. But as we get into data centers as we get into Paul Harper: power storage centers as we get into manufacturing and recycling. We've got lots more batteries, but they're a much more industrial environment. They are under much greater degree of control from a fire protection, standpoint, and Paul Harper: fewer generally fewer combustible materials in that area. That's a bit. Those are both gross generalizations, but it does. Kinda it's going to be an important factor as we talk about what the hazards are and what they can turn into Paul Harper: a little bit about battery technology. You know, batteries all are built pretty much the same way. There's an anode, there's a cathode

Paul Harper: at the end of that. There's a positive collector in a negative collector that Paul Harper: either collect electrons or discharge electrons. And then there is a separator and electrolyte Paul Harper: All batteries pretty much work this way, regardless of the chemistry Paul Harper: and the things that we are concerned about are the cathode, the anode, and the electrolyte, because those are the components of the battery that are going to create the both. The energy that we are are trying to harvest from a battery, but also create the hazards for it. Paul Harper: And i'm gonna.

Paul Harper: This is a Paul Harper: kind of a rough sorry about that Paul Harper: a rough idea of how these work Paul Harper: that you know when the battery is fully discharged, All the lithium ions are going over on the other side when it's charging, we're returning them Paul Harper: to the anode side. And then, when we discharge them, those lithium ions come back across in the Paul Harper: through the electrolyte as the transport vehicle and into Paul Harper: the Paul Harper: positive collection end of it. So that's kind of how the batteries work Paul Harper: and Paul Harper: what we Paul Harper: look at Here, then, is Paul Harper: what does that mean? And this is where I want to talk about the difference between a lithium and a lithium Ion battery. Paul Harper: A lithium battery uses lithium metal in it, and the cathode Paul Harper: is always going to have it's going to be a varying metallic compounds Paul Harper: in that, in that, in that cathode which is collecting it. The electrolyte is a lithium salt, but it's any stable liquid, or a, or a solid or or gel Paul Harper: structure. It's not in a liquid structure, and it will always have lithium metal, as the anode. Paul Harper: Lithium metal is what we're concerned about with. The metal, of course, is that, like several other metals in that in that group it is reactive with water, and will ignite in the presence of water. Lithium Ion batteries, on the other hand.

Paul Harper: will always have the cathode as a lithium salt. something like a lithium, iron phosphate, or lithium cobal oxide Paul Harper: that will form the the the cathode. They will always have an organic solvent, which is typically a a liquid or a polymer gel. Paul Harper: and then it will have a relatively inert anode. Paul Harper: That's a carbon. Get carbon cattle compound, or some alloy of of inner metals Paul Harper: that are gonna that we're going to be concerned about. But the things that drive the hazards of the battery have to do with what is in that battery that is going to

catch fire or react. Paul Harper: or or Paul Harper: cause the create the initial hazard in a lithium battery. It's the lithium metal. Paul Harper: you know lithium ion battery. It's the organic solvent, the electrolyte that we're looking at. That's going to create the hazard in that battery and that we have to control during the use and management of those batteries.

Paul Harper: There's a lot of different battery chemistries out there. I mentioned. This is just kind of a list of them. But so, when you know, when you're looking at a battery, whether it's lithium, metal or lithium Ion battery, a lithium battery is always going to list the lithium Paul Harper: anode. What's the composition of that? And the cathode? So it's going to have a lithium anode, and it's going to have a cathode material that's made out of manganese, oxide. Paul Harper: carbon. Paul Harper: carbon, tetr fluoride, iron sulfide.

Paul Harper: It's gonna be an L. I dash designation alternatively. A lithium by battery is always going to be listed by the Paul Harper: by, the material that's in the cathode. So it's going to be the entire lithium salt. Paul Harper: a compound that's in there that forms that battery. So that's how you look at. If it's all I d it's a lithium B, it's a lithium battery has elemental lithium in it. If it's an alli whatever, then it's going to be a lithium Ion battery. Paul Harper: So what are the hazards that are associated with energy storage systems? This is really any energy storage system. This is not unique to lithium batteries, but it is, it's more volatile with lithium batteries, energy, electrical, mechanical, or chemical. Paul Harper: Those are the 4 types of patterns that we've got.

the ones that we're going to concern ourselves with the most. Here are going to be the energy energetic Paul Harper: hazards the reaction. A fire explosion burns. They can trigger other Paul Harper: other items we do, of course, have electrical hazards associated with any battery, any storage system that we can get from handling them. The mechanical ones, particularly of a battery pressurizes and Paul Harper: would explode. Then the the shrapnel that comes out of it, and then chemical. We are worried about the toxic or hazardous substances that may evolve from a reaction from a breach of a cell that people might be exposed to.

Paul Harper: But the most common hazard that we run into is this energy, and in particular battery fires. Paul Harper: and and these are just. You can go on any any website look for lithium Ion battery fires, and we read about them. We read about them in computers and devices and phones Paul Harper: in things we see on in electric vehicles. Paul Harper: house fires from battery charging from lithium, I on battery charging, that happens.

Paul Harper: And and then, of course, we get the larger industrial buyers. And this is what I meant by proximity to other other items that are combustible in a recycling facility or industrial facility. We've got this high concentration of batteries that creates a tremendous fire in Paul Harper: smaller units. We're only dealing with, you know, one battery or one charger. There's a lot more combustible material around that that can ignite as a result of that fire. Paul Harper: and I, Don't, know if you all saw it. But Paul Harper: there was certainly in July 2,021, a huge fire in Morris, Illinois, that resulted from over a 100 tons of used lithium batteries being stored in a former paper mill warehouse. It was an unregulated facility that's a Paul Harper: clip of it. You can go on Google this. Take a look at it. And Youtube. They're all. You also find one from Madison, Illinois.

Paul Harper: a a recycling facility Paul Harper: fire that burn that that went on. But this one in Morris, Illinois, burned for over 3 days Paul Harper: forest evacuation of over a 1,000 homes in the area and the that struggle. Paul Harper: what the fire department was. How do we? How do we put this out? Because there will concern that water or phone could cause the batteries to explode, and we'll talk a little bit about how we fight battery fires, but in a large scale fire like this. Paul Harper: with a lot of a lot of elements involved. They eventually smothered it with 28 tons of concrete in order to isolate the batteries. And when you're fighting lithium fires and lithium ion fires. How you do that, and what fire protection systems you set up are are really critically important. Paul Harper: Why do batteries catch fire? Paul Harper: And there's there's different failure modes that go along with it. First is the pressure I pressurization of the cell from off gassing or failure to off gas to to release it. Pressurizing that cell Paul Harper: that can just be drove triggered by normal reactions or by thermal runaway, we get a situation in a battery where the that reaction that we're we're seeing between the positive and the negative from the an of the cathode gets into a runaway and it generates heat.

Paul Harper: and then we get a cell rupture Paul Harper: when we get a cell rupture that can either result in in in a fire just from the temperature that that organic solvent was exposed to, or in the case of lithium metal. If it reacts with any water, or if there's any water in the area to go there. Paul Harper: batteries generate heat, and we can have a heat build up in an area where the batteries are used or stored. A failure of the ventilation system in there can re lead to a heat, build up, which also can trigger that thermal runaway Paul Harper: in their damage to a cell, dropping it, hitting it with a hammer, hitting it with with another object. Can that physical damage can trigger a thermal run away? Paul Harper: We overcharge them, you know we plug in lithium batteries to recharge? They are rechargeable, but when they overcharge, that again can create heat, build up within the battery and sell rupture, and through Paul Harper: thermal runaway, as well as short circuits and voltage surges. Paul Harper: The thing that when we talk about the international fire codes in a minute, one of the things that the the most recent Paul Harper: international fire code requires us to do. In battery, storage situation is evaluate. These different failure modes the consequences of them in that particular

Paul Harper: in that particular installation. And what are the mitigation measures that we apply to those? So that's where this in particular, recognizing the potential for these different failure modes is important when you're thinking about? How do I install them? How do I use them? How do I manage them? Yeah. Okay.

Paul Harper: So let's talk about how we use them and how we manage them and talk about the the life cycle of a battery, and I think Allen mentioned it at different points in my career. I've been involved with every one of these from development to disposal and recycling of them and the ones I want to focus on today. Paul Harper: There's different issues associated with each of these Paul Harper: every day, whether it's chemical storage, whether it's chemical use and packaging transportation, how we install them and manage them and and handle them. What is our emergency response protocol when they're in use Paul Harper: and at the disposal in how do I deal with the packaging storage and transportation of them, as well as the ultimate method of recycling or disposing of that battery. Paul Harper: And there's different regulations that are triggered kind of at each piece of that that we need to take a look at that are going to come into play that readings from Tosca to chemical safety. D. O. T. Paul Harper: In an emergency planning, and then fire codes and and fire protection mechanisms where at the tail end of it disposal we've certainly got the Paul Harper: recre and hazardous waste rules to be concerned about as well as D. O. T. Rules for transportation of it, and ultimately depending on how they're disposed of and type of facility that you're using to dispose of them. The potential for circle of liability related to that facility Paul Harper: the stages that we're going to focus on today. In our discussion

Paul Harper: or not, we're gonna kind of skip over what we do when we develop and build them. But we're going to focus on how we use them, how we manage them during their use and prior to disposal, and then at the end of it, how we collect and dispose of those batteries, whether by recycling or out, now disposal. Paul Harper: So. So in each of these areas we're going to kind of talk briefly about the requirements that go along with it. And then what are some of the best practices that you ought to consider when you're designing the designing, the application and the facility in which you're going to use them. Requirements, First and foremost Paul Harper: are going to need to follow fire code requirements. Paul Harper: and that'll go to the hazard classification of the building, and that is in turn going to to tie to international building code requirements for that building in terms of fire rating. It's also going to go to the maximum allowable quantity you have. How many batteries.

Paul Harper: Can you have any given area? We're gonna talk a little bit more about that. The fire code implications later, the the particular fire code requirements are going to depend on where Paul Harper: you are, where you're locating this. And which version of the International Fire Code or the International Building Code, that that that city or that that fire district has adopted Paul Harper: that doesn't mean that if they they're still have only adopted. I'm gonna say the 2,012 international fire code that you should couldn't shouldn't consider Paul Harper: the 2,018 and 220, Paul Harper: 2,021 ifc revisions, but they may not be enforceable. They may not be strict parts of that.

Paul Harper: Also, you want to consider as a requirement your insurer regulate requirements when you've got battery Paul Harper: battery installations and FM: Global is FM: Global and Nfpa really Paul Harper: form the the basis for the fire protection mechanisms Paul Harper: that we have. Now, these are ones that recommendations by FM. Global for for their Paul Harper: customers temperature range that they have to operate in the ventilation requirements based on the the the classification of the material, the sprinkler density, the stacking height and packaging time limits. Paul Harper: and the maximum amount upload stored in a location that go in there, and how it's supervised. F and global kind of specifies all this. If you are insured by FM. Global, then it will be a requirement, an engineering practice. They'll require you to

Paul Harper: to to implement. If you are not insured by your Paul Harper: property, and casualty is held by another insurance. These are still well worth considering, even though they may not be a requirement, because FM: global is kind of the Paul Harper: they they are the gurus when it comes to fire protection. If you ever have the opportunity to visit their research center up at in Connecticut, and go through a demonstration where they Paul Harper: light a, a, a, a storage, a warehouse, size, storage, rack of material together, and and look at Paul Harper: the involvement of a fire and Paul Harper: the the different ways to put it out different controls to put it out, and the time it takes to put it out. It's well worth your your time and effort. If you can't get there, you can actually see a lot of that on on Paul Harper: Youtube or Google. It. It is impressive, and they do a lot of very good work. Paul Harper: and I encourage you to take a look at that to understand what happens in a battery fire Paul Harper: and Paul Harper: make reference to reference at the end to so FM: global's. Most recent 2,016 reports on the subject, and that'll give you some more insight into that

Paul Harper: best practices Your Sds is for the batteries you're using are always going to have information that's helpful to you. You want to be sure that you've designated the proper ppe and equipment. We've talked a little bit about ventilation, regular periodic inspection Paul Harper: of your batteries for Paul Harper: for heat for swelling signs that are Paul Harper: for charge are important Paul Harper: in larger scale installations. Your battery system may have a battery management system or a Bms in it Paul Harper: which collects that information and can be read at the battery unit, or transmitted to a just to your distributed control system, to give you in sick site on that Paul Harper: as a best practice it when it's spent. Paul Harper: you want to change it out. You want to

Paul Harper: you. You want to take that out and then move it to a packaged area, because what we don't want to happen is for a used battery to Paul Harper: enter into a runaway situation, even even at a low state of charge. We want to get it out of that out of that, where it has an energized source Paul Harper: to an energized connection so that we can safely manage it. It's when it breaches that we have problems up to the point. It's it's, it's, it's Paul Harper: it's manageable. Once that battery cell breaches then we have got active ingredients that are flammable or dangerous, that are out in the open and exposed to other other sources. So we want to find out when they're spent in and Paul Harper: get them safely packaged for disposition. But if there is an event, your your facility needs to be prepared through a combination of sprinkler systems and designs like that to your emergency response to respond quickly

Paul Harper: for other Paul Harper: elements of the that they are the batteries, or around, or other other batteries themselves become involved in that fire Paul Harper: battery. Transportation is is pretty highly regulated. It's regulated by Fism, which is part of D. O. T. Paul Harper: Now they don't regulate. They Paul Harper: regulate ground transportation ground transportation, either by by vehicle or by rail. not by air. I at a regulates.

Paul Harper: regulates air and the requirements around your Paul Harper: your transportation of those batteries are going to depend on the type of battery in the mode of transport. The lithium Ion batteries by far Paul Harper: present the most complex shipping issues, and the regulations change in order to deal with that shipping by ground is relatively straightforward. It's subject to. They're considered hazards of materials, and that that are regulated under the under dot regulations at part 49, and Paul Harper: it it involves the proper packaging the proper density the isolation of terminals, and that they're packaged in, and and then, of course, the mode of transport, the amount of that can be in a container shipping by here is more complicated for any battery, but in particular Paul Harper: for lithium batteries, and on the right there is a table with the Iat. Requirements, and the applicable D Ot. Requirements Paul Harper: relating to how we label it what's what's allowed, or generally prohibited in that? What has to be done in the way of testing of the battery before it can be shipped. What is the state of charge? And then that's an interesting one, because in Paul Harper: air air transportation they have to be shipped in a 30% or less state of charge Paul Harper: by ground transportation, they can be more more fully charged Paul Harper: than that and ready to go. But if it's by air, there's a definite prohibition on that. There's you know, as I said, packaging requirements that go attend each one, and then how do they they need to be marked?

Paul Harper: And how do they need to be shipped? And you know, if you've ever ordered something through Amazon that had a lithium Ion battery, it'll show up with a you know, appropriate label on the outside of that package that designates lithium batteries and the hazards that are associated with them. Paul Harper: What do we do with batteries now when they're when they're done, we've used them in our facilities. We've taken them out of Paul Harper: service. We now need to collect them, either in our our own facility, or in a be collected by a by a handler, and Paul Harper: to another facility for doing this.

Paul Harper: a couple of points. Batteries are considered universal wastes under the resource, Conservation and Recovery Act. That's the the Rikra is the Paul Harper: act and the red set of regulations that govern how we manage hazardous waste. So if it's a universal waste. There are. They're still managed as hazardous waste. But there's a more streamlined set of requirements that attend how we manage those waste, and how we dispose of those waste Paul Harper: than for other other generators. But there are requirements that go along with each part of it, and in particular, if you transport battery strictly for the purpose of disposal. You are considered a universal waste transporter. Paul Harper: and that's going trigger. Other record requirements for you. So let's say you've got 2 or 3 facilities in the area, and you've got a load of Paul Harper: batteries that you've collected at facility a. You want to put them in the back of somebody's pick up truck and move them over to Paul Harper: one of your other facilities for consolidation. You're gonna be considered a universal waste transport when you do that. So there's requirements that you are going to have to meet in terms of record keeping and and and management over the road, and compliance with D Ot. Requirements

to do that. Paul Harper: There are going to be Paul Harper: restrictions, regardless of how you're accumulating those batteries on the amount of time you can have, and how you control the inventory of those batteries in there. So these are the universal requirements You'll find them at in the code of that You're Paul Harper: Federal regulations at 40 Cfr. Part 266; Paul Harper: and if you accumulate more than £5,000 of batteries, now you are a large universal waste handler. So there, there's that'll trigger even additional Paul Harper: requirements. But Paul Harper: you do get some advantages for that, For example, under permit the things you're permitted to do is you can sort batteries by type. You can mix batteries in one container. You can mix a whole bunch of button cells or a whole bunch of I power tool batteries, or those sorts of batteries in one container, you are allowed to discharge

Paul Harper: batteries to remove the charge from them at the site, as opposed to putting a a more highly stated charge battery into that. That's not considered treatment, whereas under other types of the hazardous ways you handle, that would be considered treatment. Paul Harper: You can just dissemble batteries into a battery, packs or individual batteries, and you know, if you've ever seen a large format Paul Harper: electric vehicle battery. It's it's it's a big, it's it's like Paul Harper: half the size of the of your kitchen table, and it contains.

Paul Harper: When you open that up that container up. Then there's lots and lots of cells in there. There is a they're there, and there's a market Paul Harper: for those used cells, you know. They will replace a electric car battery. When it reaches about 80% of it's recharging potential. If it drops below 80%, then it has to be changed out that doesn't mean there's not still light left in many of those Paul Harper: sales. They're not damaged. They're simply not recharging to the level. They need to to power that vehicle. And there's a market, and applications for second use of those batteries that are out there. Don't, Don't. Try to do that at home on on Youtube. You can find videos of of guys that Paul Harper: show you how to disassemble with the M. I. On battery with a screwdriver in a pocket knife and a hammer. Don't, please don't do that. There's there's a lot of hazards they don't talk about when you're doing that, and there are Paul Harper: certainly concerns about doing that from a safety standpoint.

Paul Harper: Most battery recyclers that are recycling these on a large format or repurposing those have a very structured and controlled environment and process for disassembling that battery testing cells, removing sales, placing them into their next use in there. Paul Harper: Now Paul Harper: there's a difference when these are breached. Paul Harper: If it's a breached battery over here when we're disposing of it. A breach battery is considered a hazardous waste. What do I mean by breached? I mean the container that the battery is in is physically been breached. The electrolyte Paul Harper: is, or or the in, or the cathode are exposed the outside environment. Those are considered hazardous waste if it's not breached, it's considered a universal waste. And then, of course, we've talked about the packaging and labeling requirements that go with those and how they're Paul Harper: done. Their shift on a straight bill of leading. If they're damaged, but not breach, they can still be they. They can still be

Paul Harper: shift. If you protected the terminals and over packed it before you've consolidated it to protect it from breaching again. That's what we don't want to happen Paul Harper: some of the standards. I'm not going to read all these to you. But there's a variety of international Fire code, national Electrical Code, International Building Code, Nfpa. Paul Harper: Standards that apply to the installation of use of batteries and energy storage systems in general. Then, of course, we talked about

Paul Harper: the the transportation standards. There are also ul standards that attached to to batteries that are being produced, that you ought to be aware of some of the the, the control, how the battery is made in, how safe is it? Paul Harper: And this is a list of the the currently applicable Ul standards around battery batteries and energy storage systems and equipment Paul Harper: that may come into play that may you? You're not manufacturing a battery. If you're using a battery, then you can see whether they comply with these as they have been. That'll give you information on whether that that battery has been produced in conformance with the the currently Paul Harper: accepted state of the art. For these batteries.

Paul Harper: the key controls around it are our energy storage system, and these were addressed first drastically Paul Harper: in 2,008, 18 in the International Fire Code. Paul Harper: and there's a variety of things here where they're talking about key hazard controls Paul Harper: in Paul Harper: A. Paul Harper: In any energy storage system you know what permits are required. Paul Harper: What impact protection do you have to have? How do we store them, separate them. What are the maximum allowable quantities? What about you all listings that are required? Battery management systems on down through? I'm gonna focus on a few of these here Paul Harper: in in more detail with respect to lithium batteries, you know the threshold limit, for if you you're using more than 20 kilowatt hours of batteries. That's the energy density of the batteries that you're using.

Paul Harper: Then these requirements are going to apply to you, and it's gonna require a hazard mitigation analysis for any unspecified technology. Or if you've got Paul Harper: multiple technologies being used in the same room, or if you want to increase the maximum allowable quantity of batteries that are in that space that's going to require fire department approval. Paul Harper: Notice that down here in the bottom, in in M. A. Queues, the maximum allowable quantity for an incidental use room where we're just using them as part of the process is a 100 kilowatt hours Paul Harper: of that or 100 kilowatt hours for technologies that are not covered by the code. If you've got over a 100 kilowatt hours, you can apply for an increase in that over 100. Kw. H. But now it's going to require that you that room comply with group age, Hazard Paul Harper: requirements. Under the International Building Code. Paul Harper: There are separations that are required. There's a location in the building is required, for example, 75 feet above

Paul Harper: less than 75 feet above the lowest level of fire department vehicle access. They want to be sure the vehicles they've got in that jurisdiction can get above the fire if they need to bite, if there is one, and they need to fight it a raise and spacing it's got to be segregated into Paul Harper: arrays of batteries that are less than 50 K. Whh each. So you're not going to be able to have. You're going to have to design your battery systems either in use or in storage, where they're spaced out at least 3 feet away for each other, and from any walls, and that springs prevent Paul Harper: propagation of that of any fire event that might happen to limit it to that that particular array, and to prevent it from spreading to other Paul Harper: a raise.

Paul Harper: If you're storing them in an outline outside building, there's a requirement about how far you've got to be from the lot, line and other buildings. And again, those same, those same requirements for spacing apply in an outdoor building or an outdoor container as an indoor one. Paul Harper: the batteries and equipment itself. There's there's information on Ul standards that it must be listed by Ul, or that it must be packaged to court of in there. There are requirements around battery, monitoring systems that are required and provided Paul Harper: fire, that suppression systems that Paul Harper: go in there. And what is the commodity classification of the of the particular material? One thing that's interesting with lithium Ion batteries is they're considered a class. B, a. A. Class B Hazard Paul Harper: because of flammable liquid because of the electroly, and because it's very, very flammable. But it's a commodity, because in a in a typical battery Paul Harper: the electrolyt in the lithium Ion battery is going to represent something on the order of 7, 8, 9 of that total battery weight.

but the remainder of it is largely going to be plastics of a few inert metals and a lot of plastics. Paul Harper: so that it puts it into the commodity classification system that tells us, how do we fight that fire? And Paul Harper: normally, with a class B fire? We wouldn't use water right flammable liquid fires. We fight with phone or or smother it with Co. 2. Something to remove oxygen from the from the fire triangle, so that it can't burn and to keep from spreading it. If I've got a Paul Harper: you know gasoline fire on the ground, and I spray it with water. I'm just going to move that by. I'm not going to extinguish it. I'm. Just going to move it with these mixed use. What's really burning after that? That small on that relatively small amount of Paul Harper: organic liquid burns is the is the plastic. Paul Harper: That's what's burning. And, in fact, both Nfpa and FM. Global specify use of water missing systems in order to in order to attack that fire

Paul Harper: both to put out the plastics and deal with a plastic fire, which is a class, a material, and also to cool the other cells that are adjacent to it. It's in a rack if it's in packaging. What you don't want to do is not just catch the the other cells on fire. Paul Harper: You want to prevent them from heating up so that you start that thermal runaway reaction within the cell. Paul Harper: So there we're pouring water on there, not just to address the fire in the that's on fire in, and of itself.

to prevent it from spreading, and other units being involved, but also to cool those other units, so they don't actually Paul Harper: start on fire by themselves Paul Harper: and some some resources to follow up on that. There's been a lot of information here in a hurry. I apologize if I have talked too fast. Paul Harper: being mindful of trying to provide some time here at the end for us to take questions. But Paul Harper: the International Fire Code and the International Building Code are important sources of information. There's digital codes. Icc safe is where I've I've gotten mine, and there's some references there for Nfpa. There's Paul Harper: some different reports out there. That second report on Lithium Ion battery and use. Ha! Assessment is is available at that link, and is, it makes for good reading. Likewise does the technical report referenced here by FM. Global. Paul Harper: That was first published in 2,016, and was just revised in 2020 Paul Harper: other sources of information, because we're dealing with batteries, are the Battery Council International, which deals with the entire spectrum. That's a Us. Based organization that deals with the entire

Paul Harper: spectrum of batteries and issues associated with them, including environmental health and safety issues. And then the portable recycled Battery Association. Purba also has information in their website Paul Harper: that is, is helpful in understanding batteries and safe use and best uses Paul Harper: and best management practices around that. Paul Harper: So with that we've got Looks like about 12 min left for questions, and thank you all very much. We have covered a lot of information. We'll try to get through as many questions as we can, and the time we've got left. If you have additional ones, my contact information is down there at the bottom.

Paul Harper: feel free to reach out to me, and i'll I'll try to be as helpful as I can be. Thank you very much. Paul Harper: Allen. I'll turn it back to you. COEH CE - Alan: Thank you, Paul. That was an excellent presentation. Thank you very much like you said there was a lot of information there, and i'm sure we will have some COEH CE - Alan: questions. We have, in fact, some coming in right now, and I will run through a few of these for you. COEH CE - Alan: What health, safety, and environmental problems do you anticipate when lithium or lithium Ion batteries are exported for recycling and disposal? Paul Harper: You know, I I think, that with lithium ion batter with lithium batteries if they're exported for disposal. Certainly how you are disposing of or recycling them when you're doing that are going to be an issue. You're worried about the the in location of that Paul Harper: I think the reality is right. Now that most lithium Ion batteries are disposed of as universal waste of facilities that can that can accept those. They are not

highly regulated batteries Paul Harper: from that standpoint. If you, John, if you've got a button battery, then you just like an outbound battery, you probably throw it in the trash at home. Paul Harper: so we we do need to be concerned just like anything. It was just being exported. Where is it being exported to. And what do we know about that before we can sign our our materials to them Paul Harper: the transportation is going to be the the significant issue what happens to a battery in transport? Paul Harper: And how is it packaged or managed during that Paul Harper: transportation event? COEH CE - Alan: Thank you. What is the or organic solvent you mentioned. That's in the lithium ion electrolyt. Paul Harper: Oh, man! I knew someone was going to that that's a great question, and it's it's a great question, and i'll i'll. I'll look it up here, but I I want to say it's debt. Dmac Paul Harper: is the name of the the the most typical solvent on it. I will get you that information, but you can look it up that it is an organic solvent, that it has a very low flashpoint.

Paul Harper: and and I want to say it's Dma, C: Paul Harper: Okay. And then i'm trying to get that while we're Paul Harper: That's okay, I I mean, I think someone could Google that if they wanted to other variety and vocabulary, I should know that off the top of my head. Alright, let's let's jump into a couple more. All right. So COEH CE - Alan: are there any procedures available for responding to a bulging battery in a laptop computer? How how is it safely removed and handled for disposal? Paul Harper: I think the way that you would do that is, if you can remove the battery safely yourself. Remove that, you know. Obviously where Ppe, when you're doing that in particular safety glasses. Because what again, what you don't want to do is for that bulging battery to rupture due to an event. What you want to do is remove it from the sources you want to tape

Paul Harper: the the connecting spots does. That's what you don't want to happen is for those 2. Come into contact with a. With with each other and create an electrical connection. Paul Harper: and then those types of lithium ion batteries you can take to a low if you, If this is a home battery. Then you can. You can take those to a home depot to a a best, Buy someone who manages Paul Harper: those batteries, and they can help you dispose of them there Paul Harper: at those locations. If you're an industrial operation, then it's a matter of over packing that in a in an appropriate overpack container, and then consigning that to a a collection service that's going to Paul Harper: be able to transport those safely to the right place. COEH CE - Alan: Okay, the next one I didn't catch the context of threshold limit. I know you did mention it, but the question came in as re in reality, how do you know if you're at a threshold limit. And can you give some examples COEH CE - Alan: to recall the cost? Well, you know, because every battery is going to have a a rating on it for how many Kw. H.

Paul Harper: Are are in that battery? So you're gonna be able to look at the particular application that you've got for those batteries and understand what's the total? What's the total amount and what that is a trigger for what? That threshold? Quantity is a trigger for is. Paul Harper: do I have to have authorization from my local fire department. Paul Harper: and does that trigger the specific requirements of If, C 1,206, and this is where, when you're Paul Harper: you, when you're preparing any facility that's going to use large quantities of batteries, whether it's whether it's Paul Harper: over the the 20 Kw. H threshold or not. You want to be communicating with your local fire department? You want them to know. You want to know whether you have to have any, what approvals and permits you need to have for them for that type of facility. You also want them to know what's going on in your plant, so that if something does happen they can. They can respond safely and appropriately Paul Harper: to it. And but through the you know, looking at the number of batteries you're going to have it's it's one plus one plus one equals 3. You'll know how many Kw. H. You've got, and that's just the the trigger, for whether specific requirements of 1,206 apply to you. COEH CE - Alan: does it? Is lithium or versus lithium ion, as one COEH CE - Alan: safer than inherently safer than the other, and which one which chemistry is more prominent, and we can we expect to see more of in the future? Are they evenly distributed? Paul Harper: I I would say the lithium Ion technology is by far the Paul Harper: the more prevalent one, and the one that we'll continue to see more of in the future. The lithium metal one tends to be more specialized chemistries and batteries. Now we do use them in the little in the little button cells, but most of those chemistries are used in specialized applications.

Paul Harper: many of them related to defense or aerospace, and and in other specialized industrial applications. So by by far, I think the lithium ion is the predominant technology that we we see, and we'll continue to see. COEH CE - Alan: And could you speak briefly to the safety inherent safety of one versus the other? COEH CE - Alan: Are they relevant. Paul Harper: I I think that the in inherently Paul Harper: I think the Paul Harper: lithium ion would be Paul Harper: viewed as safer if I've got to think about what Paul Harper: you know, what kind of what kind of event do I want to occur? Do I want it to be a burning. Paul Harper: a burning Paul Harper: organic liquid? Or do I want it to be a reactive metal that reacts to water and requires even Paul Harper: even even more presents, even more challenges to fight. And I think the the large, the answer by and large would be a Paul Harper: a Paul Harper: a lithium ion battery. Paul Harper: Got you? Is there any off gassing lithium Ion battery as they develop as they develop technologies like Graphene, is the one that comes to my mind that Paul Harper: increase the power density of a battery in a form factor Lithium ions more amenable to that than the lithium chemistry is, as I understand it.

COEH CE - Alan: got you. And is there? Is there? Does off gassing occur with lithium or lithium ion COEH CE - Alan: during the charging process. Paul Harper: Yes, any battery is going to have a small amount of off gassing that goes along with it Paul Harper: in there. There's there's there's a Paul Harper: that controlled, venting through the seal. Paul Harper: But it's it's it's minute. It's not like a you know, if I think of batteries off gassing, I think of old lead acid batteries Paul Harper: that when you charge them, or when they were in your your car Paul Harper: I have a V or vented in that hydrogen gas, for example.

Paul Harper: you know you don't have that situation. The vent on a one of these batteries Paul Harper: is a safety valve, not a not something, because it's a Paul Harper: a significant occurrence that they're trying to manage Paul Harper: over pressurization. COEH CE - Alan: Okay, thanks, Paul. We have a lot of questions here that we're not going to get to. I'll just start one more here. What are the main challenges to lithium recycling? Why is it more research funding support being directed to reclamation? Paul Harper: There's actually an awful lot of research and effort being Paul Harper: being devoted in in the commercial space and in the in the funded space around Lithium, recycling Paul Harper: it's the it's not as easily recycled as the materials that we have now, and recycling You're trying to reclaim the base metals for reuse in that same type of battery, chemistry, or a a similar battery chemistry. Paul Harper: and those methods are largely hydro, hydro, metallurgical. Paul Harper: as opposed to Pyro metallurgical. But they're just in the developmental stages of that and I think a lot of that's been because traditionally there Hasn't been the volume of batteries, or the demand for the recycled metal material that made it commercially

Paul Harper: viable. Paul Harper: And and that's changing as we look at the future of ev batteries in particular, and the you know, commitments companies have made to be all produce all eb vehicles by 2,035, you know. We look at the amount of Paul Harper: lithium and other supporting metals that are going to be needed to build all those batteries. We're going to need recycled content. There was a good report by the International Energy Paul Harper: Agency, i. E. A a couple of years ago that looked at that issue and projected that it by a foreseeable point. In the future we would actually need about 40% of the medals for Paul Harper: needed to meet ev battery demand would have to come from recycling. So that is being developed. There's a lot of work going on in the space to commercialize it. It's being able to commercialize it at at scale and economic, and that's economically viable and competitive.

COEH CE - Alan: All right. Well, thank you, example. That was an excellent presentation, and thank you to participants for your questions, apologies to you. If I didn't have time to get to them. COEH CE - Alan: you can learn more and register for upcoming You can also subscribe to our Youtube Channel. You can find recordings of previous Webinars and other events as a reminder. If you logged in today With your registration email you will get a certificate for completion worth one continuing education contact hour. COEH CE - Alan: If you have any questions for us

COEH CE - Alan: Thanks again to our presenter and to everyone that joined us today, and we will catch you on the next one. Thank you, Paul. Paul Harper: Thank you very much, Alan. Thank you. Everybody COEH CE - Alan: bye-bye.

2023-02-14 13:57

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