|Overview of the work packages in SmartBatt. Click to enlarge.|
The European SmartBatt (Smart and Safe Integration of Batteries in Electric Vehicles) consortium has produced a prototype optimized battery pack targeted at small electric vehicles; the pack is currently on display at the European Electric Vehicle Congress (EEVC) in Brussels.
The objective of the two-year, €3-million (US$3.8 million) SmartBatt project, which ends in December, is to develop and proof an innovative, multifunctional, light and safe concept of an energy storage system which is integrated in the structure of an EV. The main challenges of this smart integration are the combination of lightweight design with a high safety level against all kinds of hazards, the optimization of functions and the intelligent design of interfaces to various on-board systems.
Among SmartBatt’s original targets were a 200-400V, 20 kWh battery pack delivering a continuous power rating of 42 kW and a peak performance of 70 kW for up to 30 seconds—along with a reduction of battery pack weight by 15%; reduction of battery pack volume by 20-30%; and a reduction in battery pack cost by 5%-10%. The battery pack delivered by the project exceeds the capacity target by in excess of 10%, providing a total of 22.92 kWh of energy storage.
In addition to its functional requirements and weight reduction target, the team was responsible for the design and assessment of a battery pack offering a range of 120 km (75 miles) based on NEDC operation.
The consortium is led by the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology Mobility Department (Business Units Electric Drive Technologies and Light Metals Technologies Ranshofen) and eight other partners: the Fraunhofer Institute Light Metals Division & Joining Technology Division; Impact Design; Ricardo UK Ltd; SP Technical Consulting; Technical University Graz; and Volkswagen.
SmartBatt comprises 8 work packages (WP):
- Project Management
- Specification Analysis / Requirements
- Concept & feasibility Study
- Risk Assessment
- Design & Development
- Hardware Build-Up & final Validation
The process considered cell selection based on the particular attributes of the target vehicle—assumed to be the size of a VW Golf—and was intended to deliver a solution capable of vehicle integration in a crash-safe manner. The electrical architecture was based on the Ricardo universal battery management system, providing integrated fault detection and charge optimization functionality.