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The world's first lithium-ion submarine is operational



The Japanese Navy has replenished with a new Toryu submarine built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries. The submarine differs from others in the power plant - its role is played by lithium-ion batteries. Exactly the same as in most smartphones and other gadgets, only in large quantities. This provides the submarine with an unprecedented supply of energy, but significantly increases the risks of an accident and death.

Most submarines without a nuclear power plant belong to diesel-electric ones, they need to float to the surface from time to time to turn on generators and store energy. In the last century, bulky but reliable lead-acid batteries were used for these purposes; in the 90s, nickel-metal hydride batteries were massively replaced by them. Now the time has come for lithium-ion - they have the highest energy density per unit volume, and the weight is much less than that of their predecessors.



However, lithium-ion batteries are extremely dangerous, as lithium is highly flammable in contact with water. The temperature during its combustion reaches 1500 ℃, in addition, gaseous hydrogen is released. In the confined space of the submarine, this is fraught with an explosion or an unprecedented fire, so you will have to carry out maintenance of lithium-ion batteries with great caution. However, the leadership of the Japanese fleet decided that the submariners had enough professional skills to solve this problem.

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