Tech Tuesday: Regenerative Braking

Posted December 02, 2019

Regenerative braking applies a bit of physics to the battery realm and is an important concept for any electric vehicle operator to understand. Essentially, as your vehicle moves without the accelerator engaged it produces energy that is sent back into the batteries. This not only recuperates energy but can improve brake life simultaneously. If, however, your battery does not have a proper BMS (Battery Management System) then your vehicle or golf cart may be subject to disconnects and may not work at an optimal level. Here at RELiON we set out to solve this issue by developing the InSight series of lithium batteries that were designed specifically for golf cart use. With a BMS that can handle the constant change in direction of energy you will be confident in your golf cart for many rounds to come.


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Transcript

Hi and welcome to another edition of Tech Tuesday. Today we're going to talk about regenerative braking. Regenerative braking is an energy recovery system that engages whenever the car is traveling fast enough either on a flat surface or going downhill and the accelerator pedal is disengaged. Regenerative braking recuperates energy while at the same time extending the life of the brakes in the car. Understanding the physics and implications of regeneration is critical in many applications, especially when it comes to your golf cart. Let's first start with some basics about your golf cart motor. Electric motors are reversible machines. They can function as motors or as generators in fact while your motor is operating it is the generator effect that produces the counter electromotive force, CEMF, which reduces the current into the motor. Without this effect, the currents in the motor would be too large to manage. An additional advantage of the CEMF is that it can be used to send energy back to the source. The typical situation is one of an electric vehicle rolling on a sharp downhill slope and forcing the motor to turn fast enough to engage the regenerative braking which sends energy to the batteries. If your battery's BMS isn't built to handle regen currents when this occurs your battery will simply disconnect resulting in a sudden stop which can be concerning. The good news is our InSight batteries feature intuitive software that tells the BMS to manage these regen currents when they occur. This is quite unique in the lithium battery world today making InSight truly different from other lithium batteries. That's all for today's edition of Tech Tuesday. Thanks for watching. See you next week!

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