To get optimal charging conditions the battery pack should be at an optimal temperature especially when charged at high charging levels. Not that I will ever charge at that level but I’m curious. Does the Aptera have some kind of smart battery temperature management system on board to ensure optimal battery performance and charging?
BMS tech has come a long way since the early days of Lithium packs.
I’d be stunned if Aptera’s BMS did NOT have provision for working with the pack at different temperatures while charging or discharging. Some of the engineering types on the forum will probably respond to this question with an in-depth answer for you, Elzo.
Yes. Unless you have a Nissan Leaf pretty much every EV on the road now has a cooling/heating system for the battery – Aptera included. If it’s on a fast charger the cooling system will cool the battery. If it’s cold out it can warm the battery up.
If you ever take your aptera on a road trip and fast charge it, you will be charging at max charging levels. It’s very normal.
Do you guys think the cooling system is the same on all battery variants? I am referring to the micro channel tubes they have referred to, and the rest of the systems volume (just not immediately around the batteries).
I suspect the cooling system’s ability to dissipate heat while charging is the reason we only have 50 kw DC fast charging. Most EVs have better (ie 150-250 kw) and it would make a great marketing headline along with the crazy 1000 mile range. Very likely the ability without traditional radiators and fans to get rid of the heat is the limiting factor. If it could work without major design sacrifices (ie weight, complexity, expensive) they would love to be able to get 400-500 miles of range (within the 20-80% segment) in 10 minutes; instead its an hour.
I believe you’re right on the temperature management system limiting charge power. Hopefully it can hold 50kw up to 75% (for bigger batteries) which reduces the impact of a lower peak charge rate. I’m guessing the smaller batteries may drop off faster and the bigger batteries may be able to take on more juice faster.
For reference I have a 67kwh battery and on a DC fast charger at 25 kw the cooling system is pretty much off. At 50 kw I sometimes get cooling. At 78kw (max) the cooling fan is screaming. (2020 Kia Niro EV)
I don’t think even all new EV’s have pre-conditioning of the battery for fast charging. I’ve seen complaints on youtube of Kia EV6:es not getting maximum charge rate from the start, presumably due to cold battery. I know Tesla and Polestar, after a recent update, will heat the battery if necessary before arrival when navigating to a fast charger.
My Kia Niro EV has a battery heater but it doesn’t turn on until I’m at the charger. It’s really annoying. In cold weather it can add 10-15 minutes to the charge time. Teslas pre-heat before you hit the charger. A manual button to start pre-heat would be really nice.
Hopefully the EV6 and Ioniq 5 and Genesis GV60 get that straightened out.