Term of Award

Fall 2021

Degree Name

Master of Science, Electrical Engineering

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Electrical Engineering

Committee Chair

Fernando Rios

Committee Member 1

Rocio Alba-Flores

Committee Member 2

Mohammad A. Ahad


It is possible to utilize principles of equilibrium thermodynamics to model the voltage a battery renders as it powers a load in time and discharges. Similarly, consideration of the internal chemistry inside a battery, or galvanic cell, enables modeling thereof. This paper builds upon these principles and presents a derivation of the Nernst equation that utilizes this result to model discharge curves in time for different types of batteries. The Nernst equation relates chemical activity of the reagents inside a battery to the open circuit voltage rendered by the system. By combining the Nernst equation with Faraday's laws of electrolysis, it is possible to obtain realistic battery models. Such models can reproduce discharge behavior, such as voltage rendered vs. time, under a particular electrical load. The results from this work demonstrate that the model matches real battery discharge behavior rather closely and provides insights into battery operation and how to best utilize such. The use of the model will allow the development of more efficient intelligent battery chargers and for superior energy control systems to be developed, which would manage batteries utilized for energy storage. In summary, the research herein starts at first principles and builds upon itself until a model is presented capable of describing the behavior of galvanic cells, or batteries, as these operate in time. This paper then develops and applies the model aforementioned and ends by discussing future avenues for development and room for possible advancement.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material


THESIS-JoshJohnson_Final_11_19_2021.docx (2455 kB)
Original Word File the .pdf thesis you have been forwarded was exported from. EXACT DUPLICATE but ms word does not open nicely for viewing at times...