Switched-Capacitor Cell Balancing: A Fresh Perspective 2014-01-1846
No two battery cells can be identical. Charging/discharging a battery pack without monitoring cell voltages or SoC (State-of-Charge) will cause cell voltages to deviate over time and the packs useable capacity to decrease quickly. To redistribute charge uniformly among cells, various cell balancing methods have been proposed in the literature. In this paper, a cell balancing method based on a single switched-capacitor is presented from a brand new perspective. Unlike the traditional balancing methods that rely on the voltage divergence criterion, this paper uses the SoC divergence criterion to shuttle charge from a highly charged cell to a poorly charged cell. Moreover, an equivalent resistance of the single-switched capacitor topology is derived in steady state. For fast cell balancing, design guidelines are provided for selecting a proper switching-time period and the capacitor parameters. Ultracapacitors are recommended to achieve this goal. To demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method, numerous simulations are performed on a string of five series connected Lithium-ion cells that have different initial SoCs and electrochemical parameters. Finally, the simulation results are compared with that of a traditional balancing method.