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Rolls-Royce battery pack is tested at MIRA

04 October 2011

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars took its Phantom Experimental Electric prototype to the MIRA1 research facility in Warwickshire early this summer for a series of laboratory-controlled temperature tests. Engineers were keen to learn how extreme conditions such as high temperatures and humidity levels might affect battery performance while in use – a critically important piece of data gathering as the 102EX was about to embark on a global tour, taking in markets such as the Middle East, Asia-Pacific and North America. 102EX chief engineer, Andrew Martin:

“The tests have furnished us with important data about the effects of heat and humidity on 102EX’s battery and management systems. For example, we are clear that the battery management system, which maintains safety and optimal operation of individual cells, will inhibit charging at extreme temperatures. Practically speaking, this may mean finding locations in which the car’s cells can cool after test drives before a re-charge can begin.”

The tests have also reinforced expectations of the temperature range in which the car can be driven. In general, the car’s 96 cells will continue to operate at temperatures as high as 50oC and in conditions of relative humidity as low as 30%. While well within temperature ranges expected during the tour, battery performance will continue to be monitored as the car is taken to typically hot locations such as Dubai.

The 102EX began its tour in May with events at the home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood. This was followed by drives in London and the South East of England, then Manchester and Edinburgh. The final drive is scheduled for Birmingham on 5 July 2011, before the car departs for international events in Asia, the Middle East, with a finale in North America next month.

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