Mahle and Volytica to develop battery diagnostics via charging plug
Mahle Aftermarket wants to use the charging plug in addition to the existing OBD port for battery diagnostics of electric vehicles in the future. For this purpose, the service and spare parts division of the automotive supplier is working together with Volytica Diagnostics, a software developer from Dresden.
As Mahle has now announced, the diagnostic solution has already been undergoing practical tests in passenger cars since the beginning of 2022 together with technical inspection association TÜV Nord Mobilität and an unnamed European fleet operator. At Mahle, it will probably be available for electric cars at the end of 2022. In the next step, the supplier and Volytica also want to offer the diagnosis for electric buses and electric trucks.
Unlike pure OBD tests, some of which can be carried out by end customers at home, the Mahle and Volytica test requires a visit to the test site. A special combination of charger and diagnostic device is used for the diagnosis. But then things move quickly: Mahle states that an initial diagnosis of the battery’s state of health is available within ten minutes via the charging socket.
Subsequently, this data is “comprehensively evaluated and interpreted in the Volytica Cloud and the result is made available to the user”. As a major advantage of the solution, Mahle states that the measurement via the charging and diagnostic device at the charging socket is independent of the data provided by the vehicle manufacturer via the OBD diagnostic port. This makes the company’s own solution “particularly neutral and independent”.
With the solution, the two partners are not directly targeting end customers, but primarily automotive workshops. “In the area of workshop equipment, we have massively accelerated our pace of innovation,” says Olaf Henning, member of the Mahle group management and head of the Aftermarket business division. “Now we are fully making the battery a predictable variable and thus creating future security for independent workshops in the mobility transition.”
“Inspection agencies, owners, fleet operators, and workshop networks have to date been subjected to a massive lack of transparency when it comes to battery quality and therefore vehicle value,” said Claudius Jehle, CEO of Volytica. “Until now, it has hardly been possible to reliably evaluate battery data and communicate the status quo of their batteries to owners of electric vehicles. This paralyzes the further market ramp-up of e-mobility as well as the decarbonization of the transportation sector.”
Volytica Diagnostics was created in 2019 as a spin-off of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Last summer, the company, which specialises in battery diagnostics, closed a financing round worth millions.
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