Battery pack monitor protects & balances cells

Posted By : Barney Scott
Battery pack monitor protects & balances cells

Intersil has announced the ISL94203 3-to-8 cell battery pack monitor that supports Li-ion and other battery chemistries used in medical mobility carts, wheelchairs, e-bikes, handheld power tools, vacuum cleaners and solar or renewable energy storage systems. The device accurately monitors, protects and cell balances rechargeable battery packs to maximise battery life and ensure safe charging and system operation.

OEMs are moving away from NiCd and lead-acid batteries to embrace the more environmentally friendly Li-ion battery chemistries. Li-ion batteries are smaller, weigh less, and deliver longer battery life, but require monitoring and protection for safe use. The ISL94203 functions as a stand-alone battery management system for rechargeable Li-ion battery packs. Its internal state machine has five pre-programmed stages that accurately control each cell of a battery pack to extend operating life. The ISL94203 integrates high-side charge/discharge FET drive circuitry, which allows customers to securely ground reference the battery pack to their designs.

The ISL94203 includes several programmable protection and monitoring features to safeguard battery packs from catastrophic events such as short circuit conditions and cell voltage shorts. It has an open wire check to ensure the IC is securely connected to the battery pack. The device also has a special protection feature that blows a polyfuse to render the battery pack inoperable in the event of a catastrophic failure. In addition to delivering diagnostic information, the ISL94203 can withstand battery pack hot plug events and support the full range of Li-ion chemistries.

“Intersil’s highly integrated battery pack monitor makes it easy to design Li-ion rechargeable battery management systems,” said Philip Chesley, Senior Vice President, Precision Products, Intersil. “Our customers value the feature-rich ISL94203’s ability to extend battery life, and deliver cell balancing accuracy and fast response to rapidly changing loads.”

The ISL94203 battery pack monitor is available now through Intersil’s worldwide network of authorized distributors. The ISL94203 comes in a 6mm2, 48-lead TQFN package, and is priced at $2.19 in 1,000 unit quantities.

The ISL94203EVKIT1Z evaluation kit is priced at $328, and includes an evaluation board, interface board with USB to I2C interface, and software GUI that supports stand-alone operation or an external microcontroller.

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