Lippstadt, November 16, 2016. At the beginning of 2017 the lighting and electronics specialist HELLA will be launching its second generation intelligent battery sensors (IBS) specially for caravans, recreational vehicle and marine sectors. These sensors are equipped with the very latest technology from the automotive industry. They will enable users to determine the charge status and aging of consumer and starter batteries even more precisely. HELLA has also enhanced the associated software to enable these sensors to be used for a number of batteries connected in parallel, as well as for larger batteries with up to 500 ampere hours. An additional benefit is the sensor’s compact design, which makes it particularly easy to install in difficult mounting positions.
Energy supply plays an all-important role, particularly for recreational vehicles and sports boats. It often presents a challenge, especially in living areas that need a reliable supply for interior lighting, televisions, refrigerators and other electrical appliances. The nearest campsite with a shore power connection can often be a long way off, and board batteries can supply only limited amounts of energy. This makes it particularly important for drivers to keep an eye on their exact battery capacity and power consumption. For some brands it is also possible to display how the battery is aging. HELLA’s IBS units have been supporting this since 2009. You can use a pole clamp to attach the IBS to the negative pole of the battery, thus integrating it directly into the circuit. Thanks to their compact design, these new IBS units can be installed out of the way on a battery, for example under the driver’s seat or in lockers under the floor. The sensors cannot, however, be retrofitted in existing systems. In such cases the installation needs to be carried out by the original equipment manufacturer.
In addition to its compact design, IBS has yet another advantage: these sensors can now also monitor more powerful batteries. Instead of 250 ampere hours they can be configured for up to 500 ampere hours (Ah). This is particularly important in view of the growing energy requirements of recreational vehicles. These new IBS units are also particularly robust and can reliably detect short-term, high current consumption – for example when bow thrusters are used.
The new IBS also comes with HELLA’s tried-and-tested CI bus interface, which is increasingly becoming a standard in the recreational vehicle industry. This communications interface can be used, for example, to convey the battery’s state of charge to the charging system, which switches on automatically if necessary.
These new IBS units have already passed all the tests prescribed by the automotive industry in the areas of vibration, cold cranking, mechanical shock and water immersion, and will go into series production at the beginning of 2017.
You will find more information about the new IBS at: www.hella.com/caravan