• Electrical Energy Storage

icon Batteries

Energy storage is a cross-cutting technology that impacts electric vehicles, portable electronics, and the grid penetration of renewable power sources such as wind and solar. This course provides an overview of the fundamental operating principles of electrical energy storage devices (specifically, batteries and ultra-capacitors) from the perspective of automotive applications. The different types of batteries, how batteries work, and how they fail are covered in a series of brief, yet engaging lectures.


Learning Objectives


After completing this online course, you should be able to:

  • Summarize the basic components of a battery and the fundamental principles governing its operation

  • Explain the materials used in modern lithium-ion batteries and their respective operational characteristics

  • Discuss the factors that control battery performance and the primary mechanisms responsible for performance degradation

  • Describe advanced energy storage devices such as super-capacitors and metal-air batteries



  • Basic Battery Concepts Part 1
    (34 min)

  • More Basic Concepts Part 2
    (37 min)

  • Factors Affecting Battery Performance
    (30 min)

  • Introduction to Li-ion Batteries
    (45 min)

  • Degradation Mechanisms in Li-ion Batteries
    (39 min)

  • Advanced Devices for High Energy and High Power: Li-air Batteries and Ultracapacitors
    (38 min)



Don Siegel
Don Siegel
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Dr. Siegel is an associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Michigan. His research interests include development of high-capacity materials and systems for energy storage applications; computational materials science; nanoscale chemistry and its impact on the mechanical properties of materials; thermodynamics and kinetics of phase transformations; multi-scale modeling; integrated computational materials engineering.

Prior to joining the U-M faculty, he was a scientist at Ford Motor Company where he led a team of professionals in the company's Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Storage Materials division. He received his PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.