Making battery power more cost effective

18 May 2017
Akasol battery systems are suitable for more robust applications on the water, including dredgers Photo: Akasol, De Keizer Marine Engineering

Akasol battery systems are suitable for more robust applications on the water, including dredgers Photo: Akasol, De Keizer Marine Engineering

High-performance, customisable batteries for demanding applications in ships and yachts have traditionally been very costly, but now German battery manufacturer Akasol says its developed a promising solution to the problem.

At this year’s Electric & Hybrid Marine World Expo, Akasol presented its new AKASystem OEM, a compact, modular lithium-ion battery system suitable for yachts, offshore supply and drilling ships, excursion boats, tugs and ferries, as well as mobile port equipment.

“Our customers benefit from our many years of expertise of using automotive technology in marine applications,” said Sven Schulz, managing director at Akasol.

Akasol experts have been working on standardising plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) modules from large battery manufacturers into battery systems developed for the demanding requirements of the automotive sector. The result is the AKASystem.

The new battery storage system is suitable for both low (from 50 kWh) as well as very high (MWh class) energy requirements.

It is easily interchangeable and fully scalable as the connection on every variant can be adapted to match specific customer requirements. This opens up a wide range of applications, from fully electric or hybrid drives to cable winch, crane and pump operation through to on-board electronics.

The range encompasses luxury yachts such as the Adler Suprema Hybrid Machine Solutions (HMS) from Adler International, as well as more robust applications in drilling ships and dredgers, such as those from De Keizer Marine Engineering.

The AKASystem OEM meets the high safety standards and degrees of protection in accordance with USABC, IEC, SAE, UN 38.3 and IP 6K9K.

The standard version of the AKASystem OEM has a battery storage capacity of 24.4 kWh at a voltage of 661 V (nominal) and can reach outputs of 150 kW (peak). Depending on system requirements, an unlimited number of battery boxes can theoretically be connected in parallel or in series, and thus achieve energy levels and outputs capable of meeting any given specification profile.

Akasol experts have recently subjected its latest generation of the AKAMODULE 46Ah and 53Ah battery modules to an eighteen-month endurance test, generating an impressive set of data.

The most significant result is that, due to the module’s liquid-cooled design (developed in-house) and extremely homogeneous conditions for the battery cells, the service life of the batteries can be extended by up to 50% when compared to the cell manufacturer’s specifications. This is due to the in-house design of the liquid-cooled module and the homogeneous integration of the cells.

This new solution supplements the AKASystem AKM product range, which includes battery modules manufactured by Akasol. These will continue to be used for applications where even greater outputs are required.

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