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Toshiba launches Li-ion battery monitor chipset for automotive applications; up to 16 cells per IC

11 November 2012

Toshiba America Electronic Component, Inc. (TAEC), Corp. has introduced a Li-ion battery monitor chipset for automotive applications. The chipset includes the industry’s first battery monitor IC capable of checking up to 16 cells per one IC, which simplifies design and lowers costs by reducing the number of components required in an automotive battery monitoring system. The new Toshiba chipset is suited for Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEV) and Electric Vehicles (EV).

With increasing interest and adoption of electric cars, there is a growing need for chipsets that can improve the performance of the battery operation of these vehicles. Our battery monitor chipset helps improve driving range and battery life and reduces battery costs, significant challenges for electric vehicles. We intend to aggressively expand into the battery monitor chipset business and continue providing solutions that support the unique requirements of hybrid and electric automobiles.

—Deepak Mithani, director analog and imaging business unit, System LSI Group

Toshiba’s new Li-ion battery monitor chipset comprises the TB9141FG 16-channel battery monitor IC and the TMPM358FDTFG automotive safety microcontroller. The chipset detects remaining battery levels, equalizes charging among the cells in a battery pack (cell balancing) and can also detect abnormal battery conditions.

The TB9141FG uses a 96V mixed-signal process that allows it to monitor up to 16 cells at the same time. It also incorporates cell balancing switches for each cell and is able to measure battery voltage while cell balancing. The TB9141FG is able to communicate in a noisy environment, using differential signaling in a daisy chain communication link between two or more TB9141FGs, an important feature for automotive applications.

The TMPM358FDTFG is a 32-bit RISC microcontroller built around an ARM Cortex-M3 core and is compliant with functional safety standards such as IEC61508/ISO26262. Toshiba will provide a software library developed under an ISO26262 certified software development process to help make it easier for customers to build a safer and more reliable battery monitoring system. The TMPM358FDTFG is designed to be used in a fault-tolerant system and includes a backup power supply for timer circuits and for retaining data in a stand-by SRAM. When it is not monitoring batteries, the TMPM358FDTFG can enter a low-power stand-by mode, leading to lower power for the total system.

The Toshiba Li-ion battery monitoring chipset, TB9141FG and TMPM358FDTFG, begins sampling in first quarter 2013. Volume production is expected by April 2014. Single-unit sample pricing is $10 for the TB9141 and $12 for the TMPM358 (US).

November 11, 2012 in Brief | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

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Electronic control and monitoring systems wont have any problem to keep up with rather slow EV batteries development.

This 16 cell monitor is fine if you can guarantee robust cell interconnection. However for the vibrations that are encountered in an automobile environment that could be a big if.

At the AEVA site a team has embarked on a one micro per cell design in a 228 cell string using an optocoupler half duplex loop with but a single host micro which interfaces to a laptop. The pcb for each micro allows for direct mounting on to 40Ah Li-ion cell terminals which simultaneously supply 3.4V power and a monitoring point. The cell voltage charges a 1.0F supercapacitor which allows stable operation to the circuit despite 120Amp bursts during vehicle operation. The pcb also sports the necessary bypass resistors, led indicators and piezo speakers. The latter allow for both audio and visual error signalling in the absence of the laptop.

The Toshiba chips look fine for applications up to 96 Volts but the approach described above originally contemplated for 750Vdc is now operational on 375Vdc.

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