Does one need a clearer statement that Li-ion batteries are unsafe? And is the complexity needed to mitigate (not eliminate) the risk not another sign that we need something better that is simple and robust?

Besides the risk of fire, Li-ion batteries also emit a lot of very toxic gases in the environment. A very good overview of the safety risks is available from the 2018 report of Fredrik Larsson of the research institute of Sweden: Thermal Propagation in Lithium-Ion batteries.

Our carbon-based hybrid power capacitors don’t need a BMS, don’t need active thermal management, cannot spontaneously start to burn, can handle 10C, fast charge, and have 10000 to 20000 cycles (or more than 10 years). 

From Thermal runaway in electric vehicles (EVs) is a major concern for potential consumers, manufacturers and regulators, as thermal runaway of lithium ion batteries is the main cause of fires in EVs. Several high-profile vehicle fires, stationary energy storage fires in South Korea and bus fires in China have made headlines in recent years. On the 12th of May 2020, China issued three mandatory standards for the safety of electric vehicles and their batteries. These new standards are set to be enforced as of January 2021.

The three new standards that are to be enforced relate to the EV battery, the EV itself and electric buses. The battery regulations emphasise an improvement in battery system safety regarding thermal diffusion, external fire, mechanical shock, simulated collision, thermal and humidity cycling, external short circuit, overcharge and over-temperature. This covers the main causes of thermal runaway or fires in batteries. In addition to these points, thermal runaway of one cell should cause no fire or explosion in the cabin for at least 5 minutes, allowing for occupants to escape the vehicle. The battery system is required to notify the vehicle occupants of a thermal incident immediately. More stringent requirements for preventing water ingress, ensuring proper insulation and battery monitoring are also included. An electric bus naturally has a larger battery and the new standards have more rigorous demands on battery casing collision, charging and water ingress. The standards request for appraisal of the flame-retardant performance, thermal runaway prevention and the battery management unit. Whilst China may be the first to enforce these types of regulations, it is very likely that other countries will also be following in the near future.