Wireless BMS Claims Best-in-Class Safety, Reliability, Efficiency

January 08, 2021

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Wireless BMS Claims Best-in-Class Safety, Reliability, Efficiency

I recently attended a roundtable discussion held by Texas Instruments to talk about their latest technology, a wireless battery-management system (BMS) for electric vehicles (EVs).

I recently attended a roundtable discussion held by Texas Instruments to talk about their latest technology, a wireless battery-management system (BMS) for electric vehicles (EVs). Online Zoom-like meetings are now the norm for discussions like these, and likely will be moving forward.

But back to the new BMS. TI claims that it’s the industry's best-performing wireless solution of its type. As a result, automakers are encouraged to push the envelope (within reason) when designing the EVs’ power subsystem, while having fewer concerns about safety, reliability, and efficiency.

One of the keys to wireless BMSs in general is removing the cabling that’s needed for an equivalent wired system. In theory, this should reduce the cost, but in practice it certainly reduces the vehicle’s weight, which is something that the automakers are continually striving for. And the wireless BMS gives the automakers the flexibility to scale across production models.

The TI “system” includes the SimpleLink 2.4-GHz CC2662R-Q1 wireless microcontroller evaluation module, software, and functional safety enablers such as a functional safety manual; failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA); diagnostic analysis (FMEDA); and a TÜV SÜD concept report.

An obvious important feature of the BMS is its compliance with ISO 26262 ASIL D, the highest level of certification possible. TI got an assist in this aspect from TÜV SÜD, an independent functional safety expert. The company evaluated the BMS’ quantitative and qualitative error-detection performance as well as the feasibility for automakers to achieve ASIL D.

Using a new wireless protocol, developed specifically for the wireless BMS use case, TI’s wireless BMS functional safety concept addresses communication error detection and security. The proprietary protocol via the CC2662R-Q1 wireless MCU provides a robust and scalable data exchange between a host system processor and the BQ79616-Q1 battery monitor and balancer, another key element of the new wireless BMS.

Using the available SimpleLink wireless BMS software development kit (SDK), automakers can get started right away. There is no charge for the SDK. The SimpleLink wireless BMS evaluation module (CC2662RQ1-EVM-WBMS) is available on $999. The CC2662R-Q1 wireless MCU is priced at $2.79 in 1000-unit quantities. The 16-channel BQ79616-Q1, housed in a 10- by 10-mm, 64-pin thermally enhanced thin quad flat package (HTQFP), costs $6.90 in 1000-unit quantities. All products are available immediately on TI.com.