Multi-scale Modelling

The performance and lifetime of a battery depends on how the cells are combined into a pack large enough to power an electric vehicle (EV), an aeroplane or even an electricity grid. The mechanism controlling the local environment of each cell within that pack also influences lifetime and performance.

Accurate simulations of batteries will provide battery makers with the ability to design advanced batteries without incurring the costs of creating numerous prototypes to test every new material, or new type and configuration of the cells which make up a pack.

To simulate an EV battery pack, the project considers a range of length scales, from the nanoscale – where atoms interact – up to the macroscale of a complete pack and its electronic control mechanisms. A variety of timescales have also been considered to assess atomic processes at the nanosecond through to long-term degradation occurring over years. Battery simulations and design tools exist at each length- and timescale, but they were previously not linked together and often lacked the accuracy required for understanding the unique phenomena occurring within batteries.

This project brings together world-leading battery experts with a broad set of skills to build the critical bridge between science and engineering, working innovatively alongside UK industry to deliver impact. The team is creating new methodologies and techniques to measure electrolyte properties, characterise the 3D structure of cells and parameterise models. The project is delivering a portfolio of exceptional, world-leading research of strategic importance for the UK. The first challenges to be tackled include fast charging of batteries, low temperature operation and thermal management of cells within battery packs.

Case Study: The Multi-Scale Modelling Project is helping create global collaborative communities:

  • PyBaMM (Python Battery Mathematical Modelling)
    PyBaMM solves physics-based electrochemical DAE models by using state-of-the-art automatic differentiation and numerical solvers.
  • DandeLiion
    DandeLiion is an ultra-fast solver for electrochemical models of planar lithium-ion cells and thermal-electrochemical models of three-dimensional composite pouch cells.
    ONETEP is a leading UK-developed code for first principles quantum atomistic simulations. ONETEP is available to UK academics for free.

Project presentation from the Faraday Institution Conference, November 2021


  • Validate new, more complete battery physics: including coupled degradation mechanisms, to develop degradation diagnostic tools and predict end-of-life.
  • Exploit novel multiscale/multi-physics methods to design better devices: including designing new cells and establishing new standards for thermal characterisation.
  • Integrate research communities across scales and approaches, enabling them to work together to bring atomistic accuracy into battery simulations.
  • Develop a common modelling framework: the project’s software, including PyBaMM, DandeLiion and ONETEP, is creating a global community of collaborators enabling the team to tackle the biggest problems in modelling.
  • Make trusted models, usable by industry: companies are eager to use the project’s software, showing that its work is industrially competitive and reflects a world-leading body of knowledge and understanding.

A new thermal standard, the cell cooling coefficient, has been released and published with the potential to revolutionise the global battery industry’s understanding and exploitation of thermal management.


In two example of Faraday Institution research moving to the next stage of commercialisation, the Power-Up and GENESIS projects, selected as two of the Faraday Battery Challenge Round 4 projects in what was a highly competitive bidding process, leverage the knowledge, capabilities and know-how of the team at Imperial College London and the wider Multi-scale Modelling team.


About:Energy, a joint spin out from Imperial College London and the University of Birmingham has been set up to help commercialise the battery modelling capability developed by the Faraday Institution’s Multi-scale Modelling Project. The company aims to facilitate the use of battery modelling by UK industry, increasing the speed of battery prototype development and giving the organisations it works with a competitive advantage. Read the press release.

In December 2022, the Battery Parameter eXchange (BPX), an open standard for physics-based lithium-ion battery models, was launched. The standard defines the battery parameters, the equations that use the parameters, and the reporting of experimental measurements used to validate the reported parameters. The initiative aims to provide a common language to enable accurate battery modelling and reduce costs and time-to-market for industry. 

Read the news release. Visit the BPX website 

Technical managers, whether working in automakers or SMEs, involved or interested in battery modelling, are encouraged to engage with the BPX standard to understand how it can benefit their business by contacting  


Project funding
1 March 2018 - 31 March 2023
Principal Investigator
Professor Gregory Offer,
Imperial College London

Project Leader
Dr Jacqueline Edge
Imperial College London
University Partners
Imperial College London (Lead)
University of Birmingham
University of Bath
University College London
Lancaster University
University of Oxford
University of Portsmouth
University of Southampton
University of Warwick
Research Organisations, Facilities and Institutes
UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC)
+ 14 Industrial Partners


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