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Keywords:

  • diffusion (in membranes);
  • electrochemistry;
  • energy;
  • membrane materials

Porous electrode theory was used to model performance of the convection battery using lithium iron-phosphate chemistry. The model results and underlying equations were able to quantify and extend previous interpretations of laboratory validation studies. These analyses substantiated the following conclusions on the performance of the convection battery: (a) flow in the convection battery can reduce concentration overpotentials by 99.9%, (b) both the ionic and electron conductivities of solid phases can have a major impact on convection battery performance, and (c) the solid-phase ionic conductivity of a porous separator is an important design parameter and is not considered by porous electrode theory as published to date. In view of the ability of the convection battery to overcome both bulk diffusion and liquid-phase effective conductivity limitations; the convection battery has an unprecedented potential to redefine the performance of large batteries. © 2013 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 59: 2833–2842, 2013