With the rapid growth of wearable devices, cell phones, tablet-computers and other portable devices, due to lithium battery advantages such as long life, quick-charge-discharge, high energy density, etc., lithium batteries have been widely used in portable electrical communications devices as their battery storage and power-supply parts. Regarding applications of lithium batteries, engineers are more concerned with external characteristics such as the charging waveform or the discharging waveform, and less concerned about its interior chemical properties.
When it comes to tests of PCB boards and the tests of small-size electrical control circuit boards tests (such as the charger), if you use the genuine prototype batteries in research tests, it is costly to purchase and maintain the batteries, and may damage the batteries when under severe working situations causing delays in the R&D progress. By replacing the genuine prototype batteries with a battery simulator to perform the tests, there will be a cost saving with the added benefit of a quicker, more intuitive test procedure.
A battery simulator is required to simulate the energy storage in a battery. There are limited choices for simulators, few brands and models, single limited functions, and inability to simulate charge-and-discharge functions. What’s more, traditional battery simulators could only provide a single function of a battery parameter’s setting and do not provide a true curve of the real charge-and-discharge waveforms.
Itech have launched a new product, the IT6412 dual-channel bipolar programmable DC power source. It provides a battery function module where the IT6412 can function as a bipolar forward current output (simulating the power supply to charge the battery) and negative current input (simulating load to discharge the battery).
The IT6412 simulator function simulates the battery’s capacitive-voltage-internal resistance features, this is an innovative break-through to traditional battery simulators. The IT6412’s battery simulating voltage accuracy is 0.02%, and is able to measure the DUT’s micro-current down to uA when under standby mode. Its ultra-fast transient response time (50uS) can simulate extreme-change stages of the charge-and-discharge switching process, thus perfectly simulating the battery’s high-speed charge-and-discharge switching function.
Battery simulating function can help to analyze and optimise the portable device’s running time. The PCB is one of the core parts of portable electrical devices and it is key to the mobile phone’s performance. A reasonable PCB board design can not only ensure the mobile phone’s good communication quality, but also can reduce power consumption and extend the battery’s standby time. The power consumption test mainly includes two parts: current test and voltage test.
Current test: turn-on current, standby current, turn-off current, backlight current, ring current, and etc.
Voltage test: turn-off current, working current and etc.
In the above tests, if test engineers power the PCB board with a genuine battery prototype, then additional test equipment will be required to measure, causing complicated wiring connections which all reduces production efficiency. If a conventional laboratory power supply is used to replace the battery, disadvantages will be:
Mobile communication devices’ standby current is in the region of uA, so a conventional laboratory PSU’s accuracy is not high enough to meet the demanding test requirements.
A battery has dynamic features and a conventional PSU’s transient response time cannot match this requirement.
A battery’s internal resistance is dynamic and conventional PSU’s can’t simulate this correctly.
The IT6412 power range is 15V/3A/45W, current read back resolution up to 100nA and it can simulate from 0 to 1 ohm internal battery resistance. It is especially designed for portable communication devices such as wearable devices, tablet computers etc., addressing the demanding accuracy requirements on low-power low-current. With the innovative Simulator function the IT6412 can precisely simulate the battery’s capacitive-voltage-internal resistance features. Simply connect the IT6412 to the DUT, start the Simulator function, edit the battery function waveform into the equipment menus, and then analyze the battery’s actual consumption ratio and its remaining capacity under different working situations, to perfect and optimise circuit designs and extend standby using time.
CSV file import function:
In order to accurately simulate the battery function waveforms, users usually need to manually input and edit substantial data to curve fit the exact battery function waveforms. This can be cumbersome and requires additional resources. The IT6412 supports the import of CSV test files. The user can import all tested data (battery capacity, voltage and internal resistance) into the IT6412 in CSV format and then perform the battery simulator function.