An electrical resistance-based fatigue life prediction model and its application in lithium-ion battery ultrasonic welding
MetadataShow full item record
Ultrasonic welding is one of the leading technologies for joining multiple, thin sheets of dissimilar materials, such as copper and aluminum, for automotive lithium-ion batteries. The performance of ultrasonic welds, particularly the fatigue life, however, has not been well studied. In this work, a theoretical fatigue life model for ultrasonically welded joints was developed using continuum damage mechanics. In the model, the damage variable was defined as a function of the increase of the joint electrical resistance, resulting in an electrical resistance-based fatigue life prediction model. The fatigue model contains two constants to be determined with experimental data, depending on different fatigue loads and joint properties. As an application, the fatigue life model was validated for Al-Cu lithium-ion battery tab joints. Mechanical fatigue tests were performed under various stress loading conditions for welds made using different welding parameters. It is shown that the developed model can be used to predict the remaining life of the ultrasonically welded battery tab joints for electric and hybrid electric vehicles by monitoring the electrical resistance change. In addition, thermal and electrical fatigue tests were performed for Al-Cu battery tab welds using simulated operating conditions of electrical vehicles. These included temperature cycling between -40 and 90 °C and current cycling of 0 to 10 A. All the tests were conducted on individual weld joints. The results showed that the thermal and electrical loads imposed insignificant effect on the electrical resistance of the battery tab joints.