Tech firm and university working on measuring battery health

LONDON: A British tech company is working with the University of Warwick to develop a way to accurately estimate the remaining useful life (RUL) of electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

The project, known as VIPER (Validated & Integrated Platform for Battery Remaining Useful Life), combines advanced electrochemical models from the university's WMG department with Eatron Technologies' expertise in cloud battery management and integration.

The project is funded by the Faraday Institution, a UK independent institute for electrochemical energy storage research, skills development, market analysis, and early-stage commercialisation.

The key objective of this collaboration is to provide RUL estimates for EV batteries that are more than 90% accurate.

Over time, the condition and performance of batteries naturally degrade as their cells age.

If this degradation is not closely monitored, it can lead to cell failures with serious consequences.

Traditional RUL estimates often rely on simple voltage-based analytics, which may not detect complex failure conditions or may err on the side of caution, rendering perfectly healthy battery packs unusable.

Accurately predicting a battery's RUL is crucial to maximising its performance and longevity without compromising safety. The solution developed by Eatron and WMG can be integrated into an automotive-grade battery management system (BMS) or deployed via a cloud-based platform, making it suitable for fleet applications.

Additionally, when an automotive battery is repurposed for a second life, it can be accompanied by a battery passport that provides an accurate health assessment, eliminating the need for expensive testing and expanding its operational possibilities.

Eatron CEO Dr Umut Genc highlighted the potential benefits of unlocking a battery's hidden capacity, including increasing an EV's usable range and extending its lifetime. This innovation also benefits the used EV market, as buyers can have confidence in the battery's condition and performance over the years.

The funding from the Faraday Institution accelerated the project's development, and the technology is now in high demand, particularly among automotive Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs).

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