LG Chem, part of the LG Group conglomerate, recently announced a new plastic that could revolutionize the EV segment. LG’s battery division could use some good news following its involvement in the Chevrolet Bolt scandal, and EVs, in general, could use a boost after the sinking of the Felicity Ace.
EV fires remain a contentious issue, but now LG has unveiled a new plastic material that can delay thermal runaway. Thermal runaway is essentially a chain reaction. An EV fire requires only one cell to overheat and go up in flames, and the rest will follow. Since these batteries are highly reactive to water, you can’t use good old H2O to extinguish an EV fire.
The next best thing is to delay the thermal runaway for as long as possible until the right equipment arrives. LG’s new plastic aims to do precisely that and is a blend of polyphenylene oxide (PPO), polyamide (PA), and polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).