Validation and Testing of Electric Mobility

Which methods can be used to efficiently validate the components of an electric drive system with the maximum informative value?
Which tests need to be planned in the individual phases in order to gain reliable knowledge at an early stage in the development process?

Electric mobility is advancing at an increasingly rapid pace and the ability to answer these questions is a key success factor. At the same time, inverters and batteries are important components for implementing the energy transition. For that reason, Bertrandt is systematically focusing on the validation of all components for electric mobility and the underlying energy supply. Whether it is an electric machine, an inverter, a battery, or a charging system, we address the technical innovations of these products with state-of-the-art testing technologies and new testing methods. With the continuous expansion of our capacity at our various sites and with efficient test planning and execution, we support our customers’ development process – from individual tests to complete validation programs.

The trend towards electric mobility is continuously accelerating. Electric drive systems are used for a wide range of power requirements. Efficiency is a decisive criterion.

  • Validation plays a key role in guaranteeing the reliable operation of electric drive systems.

Furthermore, electric drives or inverters – with a wide range of power outputs – are also used in industrial plants and power engineering.

  • In these cases, energy efficiency, in other words the efficiency of the individual components, is a decisive factor in optimizing system costs and operating costs.


Our solutions at a glance:
In order to gain in-depth knowledge at an early stage in the development process, we offer our customers a wide variety of solutions – tailor-made to their requirements.

These include:

  • Virtual validation
  • Functional validation
  • Simulation of mechanical loads
  • Electrical tests
  • Environmental simulation

Our validation expertise has been acquired over many years and is closely linked with the product and system know-how required. Within the Bertrandt network, we have access to all the necessary industry-specific knowledge in the automotive engineering, aerospace, mechanical and plant engineering, medical technology, electrical engineering, and power engineering sectors.

  • Testing facility for electric machines in the automotive sector: Bertrandt develops specific testing concepts and has the necessary testing facilities at its disposal, not only for electric motors, but also for the entire electric or electrified powertrain. Applications range from (mild) hybrid systems (HEV) and plug-in hybrids (PHEV) to all-electric battery-powered vehicles (BEV). We calculate characteristic curves and efficiencies, carry out speed change tests, and offer comprehensive lifetime tests.
  • Determining efficiency: Efficiencies of well over 90 % in electric drive systems place high demands on the reproducibility and measuring accuracy of the testing and measuring systems involved. With our testing systems, we can measure efficiency improvements in the range of a tenth of a percentage with a high level of validity and reproducibility.
  • All-wheel-drive chassis dynamometers: Our current chassis dynamometers are able to validate vehicles with a nominal output of up to 550 kW and to determine their driving range.
  • Trend towards 800 V systems: We test not only conventional 400 V systems, but also 800 V power components.
  • Trend towards higher rotational speeds: We can see a clear trend towards higher rotational speeds in electric drive systems in the years to come – even as high as 25,000 or 30,000 rpm. Our electric machine testing facilities are already equipped to handle this new generation of drive systems.
  • Trend towards multiphase systems: Conventional 3-phase systems are being increasingly replaced by 6-phase components such as multiphase converters. Bertrandt has therefore adapted and expanded its testing and measuring systems for these new components.


Examples of projects at our testing centers:

  • Validation of power electronics: We carry out complete validation programs for power electronics for leading OEMs and system suppliers. In addition to conventional environmental simulation, we also test structural durability, while the electric and functional features of the powertrain are also important areas of testing.
  • Consistency: Our work begins with developing a test plan and the test specification in order to achieve the required test coverage. Our validation specialists then support the entire development process, right through to the start of series production. We respond to urgent testing requirements or changes to the testing procedure by applying sophisticated project management as well as with the large number of our testing facilities.
  • Transparency: We are committed to keeping our customers well-informed about the test process and test results with the maximum level of transparency. This enables us to create the necessary proximity between development and testing and therefore to ensure high efficiency in the development process. We support this technically by, for example, VPN-based or cloud-based access to the test rig monitoring system. This makes it possible to feed knowledge back into the development process without delay. Experienced project managers take responsibility for prioritization, adaptations to the test program, and the necessary reporting.

Energy storage systems, in both stationary and mobile applications, are extremely important in the transformation process in the energy and mobility sector. Continuous advances in innovation and the broad range of applications for batteries are resulting in an increasing and at the same time differentiated need for validation services through which our customers can guarantee the quality of their products on a high level.

As part of our in-house development process for lithium ion batteries, our testing centers can test batteries with regard to environmental influences as well as mechanical and electrical loads.       

Our testing facilities include:

  • Testing centers for high-voltage batteries: We test the behavior of high-voltage batteries, from the module level to hybrid batteries and batteries for all-electric vehicles, under a wide range of climatic and electrical conditions.
  • High-voltage workshop: Our high-voltage workshops have the job of constructing the batteries, as an integral part of in the development process. This, of course, also includes the necessary documentation and “beginning of life” tests. When the tests are completed, the batteries can be disassembled, and the condition of each individual (sub-) component is documented. 
    Our extensive expertise in battery development also enables us to perform evaluations of the battery conditions and derive optimization potentials in the design process. 
  • Testing systems for 1200 V/1200 A: Our multi-channel testing systems are not only able to perform (energy-) efficient testing of several batteries, but can also generate very high electric power outputs. Comprehensive safety concepts ensure safe operation and also the protection of the component being tested.
  • Structural strength tests: We perform numerous individual tests in order to achieve the objective of an operationally safe and crash-proof battery. The main focus is on the type of battery commonly used in the automotive sector which is integrated into the vehicle structure, as well as on the design of battery housings, structural elements, and battery holders.
  • Capacity for very large projects: Bertrandt has sufficient capacity even for large-scale projects and long project durations. We ensure the validation of the batteries throughout all prototype phases and support the entire development process right through to the start of series production launch.

 

Examples of projects in the field of high-voltage batteries:

  • The challenge of endurance testing: We carry out verification and validation tests on high-voltage batteries and examine their thermal ageing and cycle stability. The calculated test durations of twelve months and even longer in some cases require high reliability of the testing systems and complete automation of the test procedures. In addition to our understanding of the components, we also apply our many years of experience in operating testing systems. Our customers can therefore benefit from reliable planning in their development projects.

A reliable charging solution is absolutely essential for the operation of electric vehicles. We offer validation solutions for all components involved in the charging process, such as on-board chargers, charging ports, cable sets, plugs, and the charging points themselves. We consider not only the functional and electrical aspects, but also the environmental influences and the resulting ageing behavior.

  • Charging system tester for functional validation: With our modular testing systems, we are able to examine the behavior of standard-compliant system components as well as project-specific requirements. We can study the behavior of the electric vehicle (EV) and simulate the electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE), or the charging point itself can function as a test object. In a “man-in-the-middle” set-up, the behavior of the real vehicle and the real supply equipment can be analyzed. As an example, we deal with DIN SPEC 70121 or ISO 15118.
  • Environmental simulation: In order to confirm the required lifetime of all the components involved in the charging process, we carry out tests under temperature, humidity, and mechanical loads in our laboratories. We also develop specific measuring and automation technology to enable us to acquire the maximum amount of new information for the development process.

Practical experience has shown that the aim is both validation and improvement of components and systems. In addition to having expertise in validation methods, it is above all necessary also to have the necessary product know-how and to link this with other services in the entire development process of the components or the system. Bertrandt can fulfill all of these requirements professionally, reliably, and precisely in keeping with the needs of customers, and is therefore much more than simply a validation partner.

  • Know-how for complete systems: Bertrandt is one of largest development service providers for OEMs and Tier 1 in the automotive, aerospace, mechanical and plant engineering, medical technology, electrical engineering, and power engineering sectors. We have many years of experience in these sectors and interconnect these areas in a targeted manner in order to generate added value for our customers.
  • Fast project implementation: Our work already begins with the creation of the test specifications in accordance with the requirements. Based on our experience with testing methods, technologies, and processes, we are able to achieve a balanced cost/benefit/time relationship and to specifically prioritize individual objectives. Our scalable testing capacities also enable us to provide high-volume tests on schedule and in a targeted way.
  • Locations close to our customers: As one of the largest development partners in central Europe, our testing locations are always close to our customers.
  • Know-how for large quantities of data: We have implemented a high degree of automation in our tests. The highly efficient connection of our testing centers to our data storage systems as well as demand-based cloud solutions ensure that our customers gain the maximum amount of information from our tests, thus enabling them to optimize the development process in the short and medium term.