On June 25, the Nio second-generation battery swap station caught fire in Jiangmen, Guangdong province, China. A video of an accident leaked online, showing lots of smoke. Firefighters discovered the open fire on the spot. Luckily, no casualties were reported. It has appeared that a damaged battery caused the ignition. Let’s get to details about the recent accident.
First of all, we will remind you that Nio prefers to call its battery swap stations as “Power Swap Stations” or PSS. Currently, Nio installs the second generation PSS both in China and Europe. It can store 13 batteries at the same time. As for the swap, it takes about 5 minutes. As a result, a single PSS can perform 312 swaps per day. Soon, Nio will launch the third generation swap station that will be able to store 22 packs and charge them with 800V. Anyway, Nio currently provides only second generation PSS. And one of them has recently caught fire in China.
PSS ignition case
As reported, the ignition happened in Jiangmen, Guangdong province. This location is situated near Hong Kong and Macau in the southern part of China. The accident happened approximately at 14:00 on June 25. According to reports on Chinese social media, the ignition was caused by the damaged battery. The thing is Nio remotely detected that the battery in a user’s car was damaged by an external force. After the identification of the issue, a user was asked to return a damaged battery to the PSS.
After the battery swap was executed, a user left the PSS. And, in 10 minutes, strong smoke appeared in the battery swap station. It seems that the damaged battery just began charging after the swap, leading to the ignition. Firefighters that reached the PSS proved the ignition case. According to the report, the ignited PSS stored 13 batteries, including 5 hybrid ternary LFP (NMC-LFP) and 8 ternary batteries.
Currently, Nio hasn’t made an official statement on this case. It is clear that they need to investigate why a user with a damaged battery was told to just replace the battery at the PSS, and why the swap station began charging it.
We will remind you that Nio currently has 15 PSS in operation in Europe. We will remind you that Nio has a battery swap station plant here, in Hungary. Speaking about China, Nio has more than 1,500 PSS here. In 2023, it plans to install 1,000 more swap stations. Hopefully, they will find the problem that caused the ignition.