UBMC(Universal Battery Management Cloud Service) Update Electric Bikes with Battery Status Monitoring

glafit Inc.

#eFleet #EVStatusManagement #Micro-mobility #Cloud #InstallationExamples

Points

  • Providing UBMC service, a cloud-based battery management service that leverages Panasonic's battery development expertise
  • Co-creation with glafit, a start-up company that manufactures and sells next-generation mobility products
  • Improved accuracy of the battery level estimation function for glafit GFR-02, an electric hybrid bike, and X-SCOOTER LOM, a stand-up electric scooter

Co-creation with a start-up by leveraging Panasonic's many years of experience in battery development

As people become more environmentally-conscious, the electrification of mobility is accelerating around the world. The source of its power is the battery. Having been involved in the development of batteries for many years, Panasonic has been developing battery management services to enable suppliers of electric mobility to use batteries with peace of mind and avoid problems due to unexpected power shortages or failures.

In order to achieve such a service, in the spring of 2018, Panasonic approached glafit, a start-up company that manufactures and sells next-generation mobility, to collaborate. A co-creation activity was launched between Panasonic and glafit, which at the time was facing challenges in operating batteries for electric hybrid bikes (hereinafter referred to as "electric bikes").

Electric bike made by glafit

First, we conducted a demonstration experiment in which 30 electric bikes were shared among students and employees for eight months from July 2019 on the Ito Campus of Kyushu University, which has one of the largest land areas among national universities in Japan. In an environment where electric bikes are actually used, battery log data was automatically collected from electric bikes to narrow down the requirements for the development of a battery management service, including the functions necessary for the service and efficient data collection methods. In the process, it became clear that ability to accurately grasp the remaining battery level is important for users of electric bikes, and that there was a need to remotely monitor the timing of battery replacement for electric bikes throughout the site. This eventually led us to consider a cloud-based battery management service (hereinafter referred to as "cloud-based BMS").

Demonstration experiment of sharing electric bikes on the Ito Campus of Kyushu University

Highly accurate indication of the remaining battery level of new-type electric bikes

Then, it was decided that the cloud-based BMS would be used in a new model of electric bike and development proceeded at a rapid pace. In the new model, a battery management unit was installed in the battery pack and a communication unit was installed on the vehicle. By collecting battery data via the cloud, data on the current, voltage, and temperature of the battery can be monitored in real time. Formerly, the remaining battery level could be displayed on the meter only in four levels (25% increments). Now, users can check it in 1% increments on a dedicated app on their smartphone to know the accurate remaining battery level.
On November 25, 2020, glafit held a product announcement event and announced the release of new models linked to the cloud-based BMS "glafit GFR-02" and "X-SCOOTER LOM."

Remaining battery level displayed in 1% increments on a smartphone

At glafit's new product announcement event, Panasonic members introduced the outline of this cloud-based BMS as the Universal Battery Management Cloud service (UBMC service for short), saying, "Our goal is to develop it as a service platform that can solve battery-related problems for all types of electric mobility products."

By providing APIs for the UBMC service, Panasonic plans to add functions for supporting mobility electrification such as a remote monitoring function that enables an electric mobility company to notify users of the appropriate time to replace the battery. Through these activities, Panasonic aims to help realize a society where more people can enjoy electric mobility.

Comments

The battery is the main component of electric mobility, since movement would not be possible without it. Furthermore, batteries used for electric mobility must have a significantly higher energy density and control than the batteries used in smartphones and other similar devices. Nevertheless, it is difficult to monitor the battery condition and the causes of problems from the outside. Therefore, how to monitor the condition of the battery and how to respond is an extremely important issue for mobility manufacturers.
Through collaboration with the UBMC service, we would like to evolve glafit bikes so they can be more user-friendly and create a future when even more people can enjoy new transportation experiences through next-generation mobility with peace of mind.

Mr. Teizo Narumi
CEO, glafit Inc.

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