Development Trends in Measurement Technology
Development Trends in Measurement Technology

Measurement Trends

Due to the digital transformation and the change from the combustion engine to the electric motor, development engineers and OEMs are facing completely new challenges. This change requires not only a lot of know-how but also new tools and solutions to meet the quality requirements in a new field. Vector and CSM offer high-voltage measurement systems especially for the development of e-vehicles that fulfill exactly this purpose. 

The fast acquisition and analysis of voltage and current curves is a frequently recurring application in the development of the electric drive train. This makes it easier to detect possible faults such as overshoot.

Batteries for electric vehicles, with their central importance for electromobility, are thoroughly tested in development and pre-series testing. When designing the overall system, it must be taken into account that the system consisting of modules with their cells battery system can vary from vehicle type to vehicle type. In addition, the modules are usually placed differently in the vehicle. This results in a high instrumentation effort to ensure the thermal behavior.

The development of the high-voltage vehicle electrical system of high-performance electric cars, commercial vehicles or buses is a complex task. Many different challenges have to be solved successfully. A long range, dynamic driving behavior and smooth running are indispensable for a positive driving experience. EMC and homologation requirements are mandatory and the shielding currents resulting from switching high voltages must be controlled.

The electrification of the drive train leads to new and stricter requirements due to the high-voltage components, which are subject to national and international regulations and standards. Vehicle systems must be functional, safe, robust, compact, light and efficient at the same time. These requirements lead to a high system complexity.

For type approval of new passenger cars, fuel consumption must be determined according to the new "Worldwide Harmonized Light-Duty Vehicles Test Procedure" (WLTP). This also applies to pure electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids. In contrast to vehicles with pure combustion engines, the electrical consumption must be determined. In the case of plug-in hybrids, the cycle has to be repeated several times until a measurement can be performed with an empty battery (charge-depleting test). This determines the purely electrical range. The energy flow into the vehicle is also measured for a complete charging process.


Thermal Runaway

It does not take pictures of electric vehicle fires to know that the investigation of the thermodynamics in vehicle batteries has been a critical part of the development of battery systems. With the demand to design vehicle batteries for higher power and capacity requirements, the measurement of the
thermal propagation within high-voltage batteries has gained special importance. The new HV DTemp digital temperature measurement system enables hundreds of precisely positioned digital sensors to investigate cell hotspot crystallization areas, which represent potential hazards for thermal runaways.

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