Electric vehicle battery performance near end-of-life is limited by mismatched cell degradation, leading to an estimated 5-10% cell capacity variation across the pack. Active cell balancing hardware architectures incorporating a Low-Voltage (LV) bus supply have been introduced to unlock lost capacity due to cell imbalance at reduced cost, through elimination of the vehicle's 400-to-12V dc-dc converter. In this work, a hierarchical model-predictive control scheme is applied to a time-shared isolated converter active balancing architecture that incorporates LV bus supply. The proposed controller efficiently divides computation among the battery management system hardware components. The energy-buffering capability of the lead-acid battery, which is connected to the LV bus, is used to trade-off balancing and bus regulation objectives, reducing peak power and improving the system cost-effectiveness. Simultaneous state-of-charge balancing and LV bus regulation is verified in simulation and experiment using real-world drive and LV load data collected from a GM Bolt electric vehicle. Similar controller performance compared to a central scheme is achieved in simulation. The experimental setup includes a custom 12S2P, 3.9kWh, liquid-cooled Lithium Nickel Manganese Cobalt battery module with embedded battery management system. The controller performance is evaluated with an initial maximum state-of-charge imbalance of 6.8%.
Gong, Z., van de Ven, B. A. C., Gupta, K. M., Silva, C. D., Amon, C. H., Bergveld, H. J., ... Trescases, O. (Accepted/In press). Distributed control of active cell balancing and low-voltage bus regulation in electric vehicles using hierarchical model-predictive control. IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics. https://doi.org/10.1109/TIE.2019.2956396