Wireless BMS meets ASIL D

January 07, 2021 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Wireless BMS meets ASIL D
Texas Instruments has launched a wireless battery management system (BMS) for electric vehicles. With the move, TI throws down the gauntlet to the previous market leader ADI: TI's BMS is supposed to scale better - and it is independently certified to ASIL4, the highest level in the ISO 26262 functional safety scoring system.

TI’s wireless BMS consists of the CC2662R-Q1 wireless MCU and the BQ79616-Q1 16-channel automotive battery monitor, balancer and protector. The main pillar of the system however is probably Texas Instruments’ proprietary software protocol running on this MCU – the company claims that this is the industry’s highest-performing solution for wireless BMS.

Wireless BMS, in general, have the big advantage that they help developers to reduce the cabling complexity. By reducing complex cabling, the batteries also lose weight and become cheaper – a significant benefit in today’s EVs at the verge of entering cost-sensitive mass market. In addition, the systems gain reliability and robustness. At least according to the argumentation of the providers, such systems are less susceptible to failure. While the theoretical possibility of RF-induced interference comes into play with wireless systems, TI says it has taken this issue into account by developing a highly secure radio protocol that includes features such as AES-128 data encryption, key exchange and refreshment, message integrity checks and a unique device authentication.

This deterministic protocol provides the highest throughput in the market claims TI. Thus, it enables automakers to create a battery module using a single wireless system-on-chip connected with multiple BQ79616-Q1 battery monitors for different configurations such as 32-, 48- and 60-cell systems. The system is designed to support up to 100 nodes with a very low latency of less than 2 ms per node and time-synchronized measurements across every node. The CC2662R-Q1 wireless MCU isolates individual cell monitoring units, eliminating the need for and cost of daisy-chain isolation components.

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