Horiba Mira to open advanced new UK battery shaker

In a boost for the UK’s burgeoning EV battery sector, automotive test and development specialist Horiba Mira is set to open the UK’s first battery vibration test facility – or shaker – to also offer electrical and thermal cycling.

battery shaker
The new shaker is claimed to be the first facility of its kind in the UK

Due to begin operations this month (October 2020), the new £1.5m Large Climatic Vibration Laboratory enables battery charging and discharging whilst in use, along with climatic capability, to carry out tests in ambient conditions ranging from -40°C to 100°C.

The twin vibration facility can operate in three axes and has the capacity to vibrate up to one tonne of mass, making it ideal for testing the biggest EV batteries on the market to regulatory standards such as UN38.3 and ECEReg100.

According to Horiba Mira, the key advantage of the new facility is that it can electrically and thermally cycle a battery during vibration testing and is fully programmable to reflect actual vehicle duty cycles – a unique function in the UK that will help provide test results that are representative of real-world conditions.

Another major benefit is that tests that have traditionally been performed individually can now be done simultaneously. This reduces the overall test duration and the number of test samples required, providing the added bonus of lower product development costs.

The ‘shaker’ is the second part of a recent £1.5m investment by Horiba Mira into battery safety related testing, which includes its new Battery Abuse Test Facility (BAT) that opened in July. The BAT facility provides abuse and safety testing at cell, module and pack level, in all-weather conditions, supported by high speed cameras, thermal imaging and gas detection.

Eamonn Martin, Solution Manager for Electrification and Environmental Validation at HORIBA, said: “The environmental and societal drive towards zero emissions transport has increased the need for more advanced battery engineering and the testing capability to support that.

“Our new Large Climatic Vibration Laboratory….along with the Battery Abuse Facility opened earlier this year, will enable our customers to access a comprehensive range of battery test capabilities – regardless of size, weight and complexity – with the option of a fully managed test service.”