Issues & Answers: Testing Challenges for Electric Vehicle Testing

Standardization for EV testing continues to evolve.

Tim Horacek, Product Manager of AMETEK CTS discusses trends, challenges and development of testing standards for electric vehicles.

Does existing standardization and test solutions for EVs make sense?

It depends on your viewpoint. If you view EVs as a black box, sure, regulations like ECE Reg. 10 defines most of potential problems in the vehicle’s intended electromagnetic environment. For example, flicker and harmonics, burst and surge on chargers are all required. Once you add a plug to an EV, it’s not tested only as a vehicle, it’s also tested like a washing machine.

Onboard, the situation is different for electronic subassemblies (ESAs). For the low-voltage ESA (12V and 24V) standardization is mature with ISO 7637-2, ISO 16750-2 being in daily use by most labs. However, for high voltage subassemblies, standardization is in its infancy. Both international bodies and manufacturers are working on early standards with mixed results.

What existing test methods exist that can be reused for EVs?

IEC 61000-family tests can be applied directly to the charging systems, and while these may not be well known to the average automotive test lab, turnkey test solutions are available today.

The main focus when testing onboard is on battery simulations and disturbances. Some standards are already defining tests that use voltage source to simulate internal battery simulations and disturbances using adaptations of existing test methods. For example, simulating ripple, commonly found on HV lines, a test method dating back to the 90s is to couple the ripple on HV lines using a transformer can be reused.

How do we keep moving forward?

As the industry gains experience, like we have over decades for 12V and 24V ESAs, the standards will evolve as we find more problems that experts agree need to be tested. For this, flexible equipment and adapting existing test methods will help speed standards development on subassemblies. Together with industry experts, we have already developed high voltage sources with powerful arbitrary waveform generators that can be used both for flicker and harmonics testing, as well as simulating voltage problems and SOC simulations for subassemblies.

Sponsored Article

Tim Horacek
Product Manager
National Technical Systems

sponsored by

AMETEK CTS the leader in EMC testing for automotive electronics, featuring the EM Test, Teseq, IFI and Milmega brands.

AMETEK CTS developed the first automotive immunity pulse generator, launched in 1978. Since then, the Teseq and EM Test brands represent some of the most advanced immunity generators under continuous, daily engineering advances.

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