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Multi-cell battery monitors boost safety for Li-ion cells

Posted: 01 Jul 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Texas Instruments  multi-cell battery monitor  lithium-ion  energy storage 

Texas Instruments (TI) has announced what it describes as the first scalable, multi-cell battery monitors that considerably improve battery pack safety and reduce design time of 12-48V lithium-ion and lithium-iron phosphate batteries used in e-bikes, power tools and energy storage systems. According to the company, the bq76920, bq76930 and bq76940 circuits efficiently protect and control 3-15-cell batteries when charging or operating in harsh environment.

The advanced monitors incorporate cell-balancing drivers, regulated output supplies and other unique features to reduce external component count and provide heightened protection against overvoltage, undervoltage and overcurrent conditions. Simplifying battery design and optimising board space, the bq76920 supports 3- to 5-series cells or typical 18V packs; the bq76930 manages up to 10-series cells or 36V packs; and bq76940 monitors up to 15 cells or typical 48V batteries.

Multi-cell battery monitors

Designers can jump-start their battery designs with three reference boards. The 18V battery monitoring reference board (bq76920EVM) supports 3- to 5-series cell packs, and includes the bq76920, a battery management controller for complete monitoring and protection, an interface adapter and software to evaluate register control and configuration. The 36V battery monitoring reference board (bq76930EVM) supports 6- to 10-series cell batteries, and includes the bq76930, a battery management controller for monitoring and protection, an interface adapter and evaluation software. The 48V battery monitoring reference board (bq76940EVM) supports 9-15 cells, and includes the bq76940, a battery management controller for complete monitoring and protection, an interface adapter and evaluation software.

According to the company, the bq76920, bq76930 and bq76940 protect and control up to 15 lithium-ion or lithium-iron phosphate cells, including 12V, 18V, 24V, 36V and 48V battery packs. The monitors claim to accurately measure cell voltages, temperature and pack current to determine remaining battery capacity and battery state-of-health. They also feature cell balancing, integrated analogue-to-digital converters and built-in hardware protection that provide the highest degree of battery safety, stated TI. In addition, the solutions promise to reduce board space by as much 30 per cent and cuts BOM cost.

The bq76920, bq76930 and bq76940 multi-cell battery monitors are available in volume production through TI and its worldwide network of authorised distributors. The bq76920 comes in a 20-pin, 4.4 x 6.5mm TSSOP package with a suggested resale price of $1.50 each in 1,000-unit quantities; the bq76930 comes in a 30-pin, 4.4 x 7.8mm TSSOP package with a suggested resale price of $2.75 each in 1,000-unit quantities; and the bq76940 comes in a 44-pin, 4.4 x 11.3mm TSSOP package with a suggested resale price of $3.95 each in 1,000-unit quantities.





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