Battery Hardware-in-the-Loop Lesson Module

A lesson through example - Step by step guide to setup and perform HIL testing of battery systems

HIL Module Summary

From beginning to end, this module presents the process of performing a battery Hardware-in-the-Loop simulation. The preparation of both Simulink vehicle model and laboratory hardware will be covered in detail. This work will build upon an existing SIL/HIL module starting with a brief review. Scaling will also be discussed to allow for simulations to be performed on a single cell, battery module or full pack. Incorporating the functions of a battery management system will be included to ensure the safety of individuals and the equipment under test. Finally, results analysis and feedback into the model’s control and vehicle configuration will be discussed.

Tools such as Matlab Simulink, Autonomie, dSPACE and Simulink Real-Time Target will be covered in detail. Step-by-step procedures for preparing and performing the simulation will be covered. Hardware limitations will be discussed so that groups with limited resources can perform this simulation and gain the necessary data to produce battery/cell characterizations and validated models as well as realistic performance data from their proposed vehicle. Special emphasis will be spent on development of the necessary subsystems not often discussed in similar work such as BMS safety features to protect from overcharge or temperature and component-to-component timeout watchdogs. A review of the logic and testing of these subsystems will be included.

Learning Objectives

At the completion of this module one should understand each of the following objectives. For some, especially students new to automotive engineering, HIL, or high-voltage systems, a review of these topics should be completed prior to starting this module. Also, before working with any high-voltage equipment, make sure to receive all the necessary training and approval from your university and/or supervisors. Safety is this author’s #1 concern. Much of what is presented here has been designed, tested, and validated to make sure testing can be conducted safely.

  • Understand how SIL/HIL simulation accelerates the vehicle development process
  • Learn to transition from a simulation to real time with component and load device I/O
  • Understand the process for setting up both dSPACE and SLRT systems to use as HIL benches
  • Benchtop test a complete A123 battery system and a single cell system with a BMS
  • Learn to plan a complicated test, merging a full vehicle model, real battery system, HIL controller, load device, and data acquisition