Under NASA sponsorship, JPL is developing advanced, high rate Li-SOCl2 cells for future space missions. As part of this effort, Li-SOCl2 cells of various designs were examined for performance and safety. The cells differed from one another in several aspects, such as: nature of carbon cathode, catalysts, cell configuration, case polarity, and safety devices. Performance evaluation included constant-current discharge over a range of currents and temperatures. Abuse-testing consisted of shortcircuiting, charging, and over-discharge. Energy densities greater than 300 Wh/Kg at the C/2 rate were found for some designs. A cell design featuring a high-surface-area carbon cathode was found to deliver nearly 500 Wh/Kg at moderate discharge rates. Temperature influenced the performance significantly.
SPACECRAFT PROPULSION AND POWER