For a long time it was just a dream of the future, now it arrived in our everyday lives - driving electrified cars. The automotive industry is embracing the new drive system and developing advanced models for a more environmentally friendly method of transportation. To drive developments in this area forward, the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy has launched the ZIM (Central Innovation Programme for small and medium-sized enterprises) funding program. Through this program, the ministry regularly awards research projects to companies and universities. e.telligent, as a specialist for component and system development, has now been awarded the contract for the "PowerSwap" research project. The aim is to develop a quick-changeable traction battery.
The PowerSwap research project aims to develop a quick-change traction battery for use in fleets of vans for short-distance operation. What does this mean exactly? While for an empty battery you have to search for a charging station and the driver has to wait until the battery is fully charged again, a swap system allows the empty battery to be removed and a charged one to be replaced. The ZIM research project deals with the use of batteries in municipal operations, so that, for example, parcel delivery companies or disabled transport could benefit from this.
In order to achieve the goal - the development of a quick-changeable traction battery - four companies from a wide range of fields as well as the University of Applied Sciences in Berlin are contributing their expertise to the project. Besides e.telligent, these are SKDK, HJS and Lechmann. Each of these companies are assigned to a special field and has the task of introducing new and innovative solutions from their industry. e.telligent covers the areas of battery management system, cell selection, electronics and software.
The results can then be coordinated in regular meeting rounds. "With this research project we are taking an important step towards standardization," explains e.telligent project manager Felix Bayer. "It would be an innovative solution to make replaceable batteries available as a finished product for commercial fleet operators".
With grants amounting to 5.5 billion Euros since its foundation in 2008 as well as about 40.500 approved funding applications from all industries, the ZIM funding project is one of the best known research support schemes of the German federal government for medium-sized companies. By supporting the program, the innovative strength and thus the competitiveness of medium-sized companies is to be strengthened in the long term.