High density, modular, hybrid battery system by FEV

Aachen-based FEV says it has developed a new, high density, performance battery-powered system for hybrid vehicles using an “element-to-unit – cell-to-module” approach.

This battery system has a very high power density of 2 kW/kg, allowing 100 kW of power with just 2 kWh of energy and a weight of only 50 kg. The concept of this battery was demonstrated and validated by FEV in collaboration with Volvo. The concept is based on a central T-bone element that incorporates the function for the mechanical structure of the battery, with built-in cooling and is said to provide an modular design of optimized cost, weight and packaging.

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“This significantly reduces the number of components and assembly steps,” said Stefan Pischinger, CEO, FEV Group. “The extrusion process chosen for the T-bone component incorporating the function ensures a high degree of flexibility, providing further positive scaling results for successful cost reduction. In addition, the compact design allows for the stacking of multiple modules.”

High density hybrid

The elements are connected to both sides of the T-bone structure by thermally conductive adhesive. For electrical insulation of the elements in the T-bone carrier, a dust coating is applied. Both the thickness of the layer of this coating and the thermally conductive adhesive are applied in such a way that the thermal contact resistance between the refrigerant and the battery components is minimal.

To compensate for any tolerances of the components along the T-bone component and for additional electrical insulation of the battery element housings between them, a self-adhesive compression foam shall be applied between each battery element. To mechanically fasten the cells to the carrier, they are pressed to a uniform length through two extreme plates and then fastened to the extreme pieces of the T-bone building block through screws through the extreme plates.

The sensor wiring as well as the dependent units are placed centrally between the contacts of the element while the airflow for additional cooling of the elements is guided through the unit cover. The air ducts “run” parallel to the slave units through the connection bars (busbars). Thus, the unit cover also performs many functions to further reduce both the number of individual components and the weight of the units. Thanks to the cooling channels through the flow inside the T-bone, the battery elements are cooled from the side and bottom.

FEV says that the functional integration of the cooling system into the building block reduces both the size and weight of the battery. In addition, the cooling system of the connection bar allows high power density through targeted management of data temperatures in “hotspots”.

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