Battery Management Technologies at the Heart of the EV Ecosystem – HOW Automotive Industry Commentary
Dato Madani Sahari, CEO of Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute (MARii)
In this latest guest post written exclusively for just-auto, Dato Madani Sahari, CEO of Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute (MARii), considers the evolution of the electromobility ecosystem and the growing importance of the management system. battery.
While the discussion around electric vehicle manufacturing often revolves around lightweight frames, battery, load availability, and electric motors, a key part of the electromobility ecosystem is the technology to manage energy storage in batteries or the battery management system (BMS).
Typically, the energy used in electric vehicles is stored in a group or series of battery cells, called battery packs. This means that there is not a single battery cell in the car (as you would see in your cell phone), but rather a collection of batteries connected together in many groups to store energy.
During the operation of the electric vehicle as well as the battery charging phase, each cell should be monitored, balanced and managed to ensure that it is operating safely and is protected to last as long as possible. Unlike cell phone batteries which must be replaced every one or more years, batteries in electric vehicles must be designed to last the life of the vehicle itself – a failure in which the cost of running the car becomes non-existent. profitable for the owner.
Some reports estimate that the cost of the battery alone accounts for around 30-40% of the total cost of the vehicle. This poses challenges in capturing the minds of consumers, who must overcome both range anxiety and the lower costs of traditional cars, and particularly in Malaysia – the cheaper cost of fuel.
The products consumed to make batteries are also becoming a challenge. Cobalt prices, for example, rose sharply by more than triple between 2016 and 2018, only to fall back to 2016 prices. However, this volatility casts many doubts on future battery costs – making it a risk to produce. without the proper production volume and planning.
Consumer sentiment towards electric vehicles is slowly improving. In the case of EV batteries, a key competitive area is mastery of battery management technology.
The BMS is one of the crucial components of electric vehicles, which allows the monitoring and reporting of the state of charge (SOC), the state of health (SOH) and the remaining useful life of each rechargeable battery cell. to several units. It also monitors and manages internal and ambient temperatures, current, voltage and controls charge and discharge operations.
The BMS is also able to manage and adapt to changing battery characteristics over time – meaning it optimizes battery life based on varying conditions throughout the life. vehicle life, that is, the longer the batteries can last without replacement, the more economical the battery is. cost of owning electric vehicles when spread over a longer period.
With more and more Malaysian SMEs participating in the IT sector, battery management technologies present new opportunities for domestic players to participate in the future automotive industry.
With more and more Malaysian SMEs participating in the IT sector, battery management technologies present new opportunities for domestic players to participate in the future automotive industry. These opportunities are similar in history when the Engine Control Unit (ECU) gained attention in the 1970s and changed the way the automotive industry viewed the internal combustion engine – more fuel efficient engines. fuel and lighter weight have become a reality and have made the car an affordable transportation option.
The National Automotive Policy (NAP2020) stipulates the development of critical components and systems for Next Generation Vehicles (NxGV), Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and Industry 4.0, including systems and components in AACVs, industry 4.0 technologies, lightweight materials technology. as well as hybrid, electric and fuel cell vehicles.
Battery Management Systems (BMS), Thermal Management Systems (TMS) and technologies related to on-board energy storage are listed in Phase 1 of the policy and will support the manufacture and application of batteries as well as the development of BMS and TMS.
MARii, in collaboration with government and industry, began the creation of the Electric Vehicle Interoperability Center (EVIC) – a shared test center for the development of electric vehicles and electric vehicle related products and systems, including including vehicle technology, smart grid integration, as well as agriculture, energy storage and management.
As more and more investment in electric vehicle manufacturing comes not only from OEMs, but also in electromobility-specific components, raw materials and systems, the more the Malaysian ecosystem will strive to become not only assembly and sale of electric vehicles, but also to participate in its value. chain at all levels.
The author is the CEO of Malaysia Automotive, Robotics and IoT Institute (MARii)