Cell voltage monitoring: costs per measuring channel reduced by 75 percent

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SMART TESTSOLUTIONS, the specialist for cell voltage monitoring systems, will be presenting the latest version of its G6S cell voltage monitoring (CVM) system for series applications at Hydrogen + Fuel Cells Europe 2024, part of the Hannover Messe trade fair. Other highlights of the trade fair appearance include the new system for cell voltage simulation CVSim and the first large-scale production-compatible component for cell contacting (CVP) for an electrolyzer.

In addition to technical features such as high measurement accuracy and system robustness, the cost per measurement channel plays a decisive role in CVM systems for series applications. With the latest version of the CVM G6S, first presented in 2023, SMART TESTSOLUTIONS has achieved a cost reduction of 75 percent compared to the predecessor model G5S. The enormous savings are made possible by the use of integrated circuits on the measurement modules and the platform approach in development. The new G6S series CVM is scalable, allowing both single-cell measurements and voltage measurements across two or four cells. The measuring modules are supplemented by a target market-specific head module, which is equipped with the data interfaces prevalent in the respective target market. The head module also offers additional functions, such as measuring the total stack voltage to check the plausibility of the individual values.

Profinet connection facilitates use in electrolyzers

In addition to automotive, SMART TESTSOLUTIONS is addressing the marine, aviation, and electrolysis markets with the G6S. By using the same measurement modules in all application areas, economies of scale are achieved in production. The provision of the Profinet Ethernet standard for industrial applications via the correspondingly adapted head module should be of particular interest for use in electrolyzers. It enables a direct connection to the process bus system of the electrolyzer control systems. Other components of a CVM G6S system from SMART TESTSOLUTIONS are the mounting parts for the mechanical integration of the CVM near the cell stack, the necessary connection cable harnesses and the cell contacts required for tapping the voltages on the individual bipolar plates.

The so-called cell voltage pickups must be designed differently depending on the nature of the cell stack. SMART TESTSOLUTIONS now has several variants up its sleeve. At Hydrogen + Fuel Cells Europe, the Stuttgart-based company is presenting the first CVP component for an electrolyzer that is suitable for large-scale production. This is characterized by the fact that assembly on the stack can be automated.

Cell Voltage Simulation addresses stack developers

For the commissioning and testing of cell voltage measurement electronics and fuel cell control units, especially for software function tests, it is necessary to simulate cell-specific voltage values. SMART TESTSOLUTIONS meets this requirement with its CVSim system. The simulation modules of this system output cell voltage signals in parallel and fully synchronized. The outputs are galvanically decoupled and short-circuit-proof. The CVSim also scores with an attractive channel price. The MCM IntelliSim modules are supplemented by the master module, which is a system extension that ensures data rates of up to 1kHz per channel, a fast data connection via Ethernet or EtherCAT and therefore real-time operation of the cell voltage simulation. For less dynamic applications, operation via CAN without a master module may be sufficient.


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