Structural batteries challenges for emerging technologies in aviation

Structural batteries challenges for emerging technologies in aviation

Gennaro Di Mauro, Michele Guida, Gerardo Olivares, Luis Manuel Gomez

download PDF

Abstract. In a global context where modern societies need to move towards greater environmental sustainability, ambitious targets to limit pollutant emissions and combat climate change have been set out. Concerning the aviation sector, research centers and industries are carrying out new aircraft designs with increased use of electrical energy onboard aircraft both for non-propulsive and propulsive purposes, leading to the concepts of More Electric Aircraft (MEA), Hybrid Electric Aircraft (HEA) and All-Electric Aircraft (AEA). Despite the expected flight emissions reduction, new potential air transportation missions, safer flights, and enhanced design flexibility, there are some drawbacks hindering the trend to HEA solutions, strictly bounded to the limited performance of traditional battery systems. The reference is to low energy and power densities, which impact on aircraft weight and flight performances. A new technology, namely structural battery, combining energy storage and load-bearing capacity in multifunctional material structures, is now under investigation since capable to mitigate or even eliminate barriers to the electrification of air transport sector. Although, the deployment of this technology raises relevant questions regarding airworthiness requirements, which need to be applied when considering such multifunctional materials. The purpose of the presented activity is to take a step towards the definition of aircraft certification requirements when dealing with structural batteries, considering them both as a structure and as a battery, to maintain unchanged or even improve the level of safety in all normal and emergency conditions.

Structural Batteries, Multifunctional Materials, Airworthiness Requirements, Certification by Analysis

Published online 11/1/2023, 5 pages
Copyright © 2023 by the author(s)
Published under license by Materials Research Forum LLC., Millersville PA, USA

Citation: Gennaro Di Mauro, Michele Guida, Gerardo Olivares, Luis Manuel Gomez, Structural batteries challenges for emerging technologies in aviation, Materials Research Proceedings, Vol. 37, pp 399-403, 2023


The article was published as article 88 of the book Aeronautics and Astronautics

Content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI.

[1] European Commission. Communication from the Commission—The European Green Deal.
[2] Yildiz, M. (2022). Initial airworthiness requirements for aircraft electric propulsion. Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, 94(8), 1357-1365.
[3] Sziroczak, D., Jankovics, I., Gal, I., Rohacs, D. (2020). Conceptual design of small aircraft with hybrid-electric propulsion systems. Energy, 204, 117937.
[4] Adam, T.J., Liao, G., Petersen, J., Geier, S., Finke, B., Wierach, P., Kwade, A., Wiedemann, M. (2018). Multifunctional Composites for Future Energy Storage in Aerospace Structures. Energies, 11, 335.
[5] Scholz, A.E., Hermanutz, A., Hornung, M. (2018). Feasibility Analysis and Comparative Assessment of Structural Power Technology in All-Electric Composite Aircraft. In Proceedings of the Deutscher Luftund Raumfahrtkongress, Friedrichshafen, Germany.
[6] Nguyen, S.N., Millereux, A., Pouyat, A., Greenhalgh, E.S., Shaffer, M.S.P., Kucernak, A.R.J., Linde, P. (2021). Conceptual Multifunctional Design, Feasibility and Requirements for Structural Power in Aircraft Cabins. Journal of Aircraft, 58, 677–687.
[11] FAA. AC20-107B: Composite Aircraft Structure. 2009.
[12] FAA. AC20-184: Guidance on Testing and Installation of Rechargeable Lithium Battery and Battery Systems on Aircraft. 2015.
[13] EASA. CS-25: Certification Specifications for Large Aeroplanes.