Bidirectional Power Supplies Put New Batteries to the Test

Sept. 15, 2023
Testing a high-voltage battery? Building a battery-powered IoT device? Check out this installment of Products of the Week for the latest battery test systems to hit the market.

The world is working to build batteries that are safer, charge faster, and store more energy, installing them into everything from electric vehicles (EVs) to new types of IoT devices. Consequently, testing is becoming an even more important part of the development process. The insights stemming from battery testing can help identify problems that negatively impact battery safety, reliability, quality, storage capacity, and even charging rates over time.

As a result, everyone from NI (formerly National Instruments) to Elektro-Automatik to other industry players are introducing better battery test systems that promise to save space, cost, and time while offering more flexibility.

To stay a step ahead of the technological shifts occurring inside batteries, they’re rolling out new generations of battery test systems that can handle higher power levels along with wider voltages and currents. And these are rarely one-dimensional systems: They can become power supplies or electronic loads for battery cycling, and they frequently also act as battery emulators in cases where you may not want to risk a real-world battery.

Besides handling higher power levels, voltages, and currents, they are also being upgraded with new control and measurement hardware to gauge the voltage, current, and temperature of a battery and more accurately diagnose the internal operations of battery cells, modules, and packs. Software, too, is increasingly part of the package to provide connectivity to other test equipment, manage massive amounts of data, and analyze it all.

In this gallery, we'll explore some of the technical issues facing engineers when it comes to batteries and review some of the latest battery test systems that they can use to overcome these challenges:

Check out the previous Products of the Week gallery here. 

You can also visit the Products of the Week archives here. 

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