Energy Storage Systems

Developing and testing battery management systems and fuel cell technologies for electric vehicles

Powerful, innovative energy storage systems which allow for long ranges and rapid charging while meeting the highest safety requirements are key for the final breakthrough of electric vehicles. With our solutions, we offer manufacturers all over the world comprehensive support for developing and testing battery management systems and state-of-the-art fuel cell technologies.

Challenges

Operating the various electric drives on board an electric vehicle (EV) requires a large amount of electrical energy – any time and without limitations. This means that a reliable and powerful onboard energy storage system must meet a variety of challenges: Among other things, it must operate efficiently at a reduced weight and size while guaranteeing maximum safety, a long lifetime, rapid recharging, and long ranges. Different methods are used to store energy in an electric vehicle. In addition to electrochemical batteries, which are by far the most important systems for onboard energy storage today, fuel cells are also becoming increasingly important, especially for heavy-duty trucks.

Each battery-electric vehicle (BEV) needs a battery management system (BMS) to ensure safe operation of the battery. This BMS must handle various tasks, including voltage and temperature measurement, overall current measurement, thermal management, balancing the level of charging for the individual cells as well as operating relays and safety routines. Future challenges for BEVs include the bidirectional energy transfer to stabilize the power grid by using the vehicle battery as a kind of mobile storage system, a concept better known as vehicle-to-grid (V2G) systems.

Fuel cells are becoming increasingly important for vehicle propulsion – in trains and trucks as well as an ever-increasing number of passenger cars. A typical fuel cell system consists of an air supply path (cathode), a hydrogen supply path (anode), and a cooling circuit. Fuel cell vehicles therefore require an electronic control unit (ECU) to control the operation of the fuel cell system and its individual subsystems. As with any other application, these ECUs have to pass extensive tests before being introduced to the market.

dSPACE Solution

Whether you are developing and testing fuel cell control systems, battery storage systems, or other technologies related to onboard energy storage systems, we offer the right tools to help you improve your development process. Depending on the device under test, from complete battery management systems (BMS) to individual cell supervision circuits (CSC) which monitor and balance voltages at cell level, our various software and hardware products cover testing on the signal level as well as on the high-voltage level. Just ask us.

For the simulation on the signal level of CSCs and additional components, such as current sensors, you can use our SCALEXIO real-time hardware. Our test systems support a wide range of communication interfaces, including CAN, SPI, isoSPI, and I²C.

Typical BMS test system from dSPACE.

For testing battery management systems (BMS) on a high-voltage level, we provide preconfigured test systems that can be used to test the complete BMS with all its measurement and balancing devices, pre-charge circuits, and isolation failure monitors. The dSPACE test systems emulate all inputs of the BMS, including all battery cells and their voltages, the battery current as well as all signals coming from the various high-voltage sensors in the vehicle, e.g., at the inverter, the battery, or the charging point. Each test system is equipped with several high-precision battery cell voltage emulation boards, which make it possible to simulate high-voltage batteries at the cell level. To ensure safe operation, the dSPACE test systems have an integrated safety compartment to protect the test engineers and the equipment against high voltages. Thanks to the modular design of our BMS test systems, they are highly scalable and can be easily adapted to your individual project requirements. 

On the software side, our model library ASM Electric Components offers open, ready-to-use multicell battery models as well as an interface for connecting batteries in parallel.

Compact hardware-in-the-loop test system on which a fuel cell model is calculated. All interfaces of the control unit under test are operated this way and malfunctions can be triggered.

We can also support you in developing and testing state-of-the-art fuel cell technologies. For this purpose, we offer industry-proven hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) test systems in which a simulator performs all relevant functions required for the operation of fuel cell ECUs, e.g., SCALEXIO rack systems. In addition, we can enhance our standard models in engineering projects to ensure that you meet all challenges related to the required plant models. 

Selected Use Cases

Emulating Battery Cell Voltages

Our HIL systems support the testing of battery management systems. Learn more about typical applications and the benefits of our solution portfolio.

Production Software for Safety-Related E-Mobility Applications

Transfer function models to production code efficiently and in compliance with safety standards.

Thermal Monitoring of Batteries

Learn how our tools let you monitor the thermal behavior of lithium-ion battery packs.

Selected Success Stories

Ford Motor Company: Fuel Cell Revolution

Ford has gained a wealth of experience from their research and development of fuel cells for in-vehicle use. Their researchers have tested several concepts in the laboratory and on the road.

  • Fuel Cell Systems Produktinformationen, PDF, Englisch, 876 KB
  • Battery Management Systems Produktinformationen, PDF, Englisch, 1030 KB
Video Erfolgsstorys Anwendungsfälle

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