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Investigation of extinguishing water and combustion gases from vehicle fires
RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Safety and Transport, Fire and Safety.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4543-928X
RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Safety and Transport, Fire and Safety.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2160-8034
RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Safety and Transport, Fire and Safety.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6430-6602
RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Safety and Transport, Fire and Safety.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9768-8838
2023 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Sales of electric vehicles doubled in 2021 compared to the previous year and nearly 10% of the global new-car sales were electric in 2021. In the recent IEA Global EV Outlook 2022, Norway, Iceland, and Sweden were reported to have the highest electric car shares of the new car market: 86%, 72% and 43%, respectively. Electrification of transport has multiple benefits but has also raised some concerns. For example, the use of rare metals and their sourcing are concerns from an environmental perspective, the capacity of the electricity network and the limited number of charging stations has been raised as an implementation barrier, and the new fire and explosion risks of batteries have caused concerns amongst users, property owners and rescue services alike society.Fires starting in the traction batteries (lithium-ion battery) are rare but if the battery catches fire, it can be difficult to extinguish since the battery packs are generally well protected and difficult to reach. To cool the battery cells, firefighters must prolong the application duration of suppression agent. This generally results in use of large amounts of water/fire extinguishing agent, which could carry pollutants into the environment.In this work, extinguishing water from three vehicle fires as well as from one battery pack fire has been investigated. Large-scale fire tests were performed with both conventional and electric vehicles. Tests were performed indoors at RISE, Borås, which also allowed analysis of combustion gases for both inorganic and organic pollutants in the gas and liquid phase.It was found that nickel, cobalt, lithium, manganese and hydrogen fluoride appeared in higher concentrations in the effluents from the battery electric vehicle and lithium-ion battery compared to from the internal combustion engine vehicle. However, lead was found in higher concentrations in the effluents from the internal combustion engine vehicle, both in the combustion gases as well as in the extinguishing water. Ecotoxicity analysis showed that extinguishing water from all vehicle and battery fires analysed in this work were toxic against the tested aquatic species.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023. , p. 53
Series
RISE Rapport ; 2023:22
Keywords [en]
electric vehicle, battery, fire test, extinguishing water, ecotoxicity
National Category
Other Earth and Related Environmental Sciences Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified Other Chemistry Topics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-64249ISBN: 978-91-89757-65-3 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ri-64249DiVA, id: diva2:1744894
Funder
Swedish Energy Agency, 48193-2
Note

Funding: Energimyndigheten 48193-2

Available from: 2023-03-21 Created: 2023-03-21 Last updated: 2023-06-05Bibliographically approved

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Hynynen, JonnaWillstrand, OlaBlomqvist, PerQuant, Maria
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CiteExportLink to record
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