Webinars Illustrate the Science and Practice of Xplorlabs
September 8, 2020

Lithium-ion Batteries: What You Need to Know About Their Safety


Judy Jeevarajan

This webinar was led by Judy Jeevarajan, Ph.D., research director, electrochemical safety at Underwriters Laboratories; and Victoria Strickland, gifted education teacher at East Norriton Middle School.

In this webinar, Dr. Jeevarajan led educators into a deeper look at the basic chemistry of lithium-ion batteries, the hazards associated with them and how one can avoid some of the causes that lead to catastrophic failures with these batteries. Victoria Strickland discussed how she implemented Xplorlabs: Fire Forensics through distance-learning with her middle school students.

View the webinar recording and learn more here.

Judy Jeevarajan
Research Director
Underwriters Laboratories Inc.

Dr. Judy Jeevarajan is a Research Director at Underwriters Laboratories Inc. She has worked in the area of batteries for more than 23 years with a primary focus on the lithium-ion chemistry. Before joining UL, she worked for NASA at Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston for 12 years. At NASA, she was the Group Lead for Battery Safety and Advanced Technology at NASA-JSC. Before becoming a civil servant at NASA in 2003, she worked on-site at NASA-JSC for Lockheed Martin Space Operations for five and a half years. 

She has an MS in Chemistry from the University of Notre Dame (’91) and she graduated with a Ph.D. in Chemistry (Electrochemistry) from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa in 1995. Dr. Jeevarajan worked for a small business company in College Station, TX for a year immediately after completion of graduate work. Following this, she worked for a year as a postdoctoral fellow at Texas A&M University on NASA projects. 

She has written three book chapters, one on battery safety that was published in 2009 and a second one on commercial Li-ion cell safety, published in January 2014 and a third one on safety of lithium-ion batteries in commercial equipment, published in October 2018. Dr. Jeevarajan supported the Boeing 787 Investigation as a member of a Non-Advocate Review panel as well as an advisory member to the FAA and also supported an NTSB informational forum on Li-ion batteries. Dr. Jeevarajan has made more than 130 presentations at conferences and has won numerous NASA awards the most note-worthy of them being the NASA Exceptional Service Medal and the NASA-NESC Engineering Excellence Award.  At UL, she was inducted into the Henry Merrill Society as a Distinguished Member of the Technical Staff in 2016 and has completed UL’s Global Leader Program (2016) and Executive Leadership Program (2019).  Dr. Jeevarajan received the AIAA 2019 Aerospace Power Systems award in August 2019 and recognition in April 2020 by IESA as one of the leading women in the energy storage and electric vehicle industry.

 

Victoria Strickland
Gifted Education Teacher
East Norriton Middle School

Victoria Strickland is a Gifted Education teacher at East Norriton Middle School in Norristown, PA. She began teaching at ENMS 10 years ago after shifting careers from producing and writing for  T.V. news for 13 years.. Victoria lives in suburban Philadelphia with her husband, 8-year-old daughter, 9 fish, 2 cats, and a bearded dragon named Zack. Victoria loves to travel to new places and enjoys running, baking, and writing in her spare time.

Many websites and platforms claim to offer enriching STEM opportunities for educators to use with their students, but when it gets down to the knitty-gritty – do they really?  A teacher with no formal science or math certifications gives a breakdown of how the UL XPLORLABS “Lithium-Ion Battery” module worked for her in her virtual classroom and the positive impact it had for student learning.