A European consortium known as SmartBatt believes that something critical and essential is missing for pure electric vehicle technology – battery packs that aren##Q##t heavy and bulky. Therefore, SmarBatt##Q##s objective is to develop an innovative, multifunctional, light and safe energy storage system smartly integrated into electric cars.
SmartBatt is made up of nine partners from five countries – corporations in manufacturing and technology along with research organizations, including Volkswagen, the Ricardo engineering and consulting company, the SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, the Austrian Institute of Technology and the Vehicle Safety Institute. Reducing CO2 emissions and slowing down climate change by supporting EVs and “green” electricity are commitments that have been made by the participating countries.
The team says that it##Q##s dedicated to bringing experience and skill sets to cover all aspects of developing advanced battery technologies – vehicle competence, electrics, electronics, batteries, lightweight design, engineering, materials, safety, testing and validation. Whew. Results will be distributed through a project website, papers and training sessions, as well as face-to-face workshops and meetings with OEMs.
The group is working on battery pack design and optimization processes that could deliver a 20-kilowatt hour, 200- to 400-volt pack with a 15-percent reduction in weight compared to current systems and that can deliver a continuous power rating of 36 kw. The consortium says that its concept exceeds the capacity target by more than 10 percent, providing a total of 22.92 kwh of energy storage. A prototype of the battery pack designed for the SmartBatt project was displayed at the European Electric Vehicle Congress that ended November 22.
Like all of the other advanced battery technology projects, it will take a few years for these outcomes to enter the mainstream. But the test results are impressive and having a major engineering company like Ricardo engaged in the process could move it forward faster.