Visiting Scholar from China Explores Electric Vehicle Technology
With a desire to expand her knowledge of electric and hybrid electric vehicles, Yaping Cai set her sights on CAR where she not only expanded her education about battery characteristics and battery management systems, but gained experience in public speaking.
A visiting scholar from Southwest Jiaotong University, located in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China, Cai has spent the past year at CAR working with Senior Researcher Matilde D’Arpino and Professor Giorgio Rizzoni, on a research project focused on battery pack modeling.
“We established a generalized equivalent circuit model for large scale battery packs with cell-to-cell variation,” said Cai. “Sometimes when battery cells suffer from aging or high temperature, their parameters will change. Based on this model, we can predict the current and voltage distribution within the battery pack without solving complex battery models. It can be used in battery pack design and control systems to predict the pack behavior for what concerns capacity usage and heat generation.”
Cai was chosen to present her research teams paper at the 2019 IEEE National Aerospace & Electronics Conference.
“This was my first time presenting in front of Americans, and I was a little bit nervous,” said Cai. “Fortunately everything went well. This experience has significant meaning to me. It made me more courageous and confident. It provided me an opportunity to gain valuable knowledge and I made some new connections with others working in advanced technology.”
Cai will return home later this month to complete her PhD in electrical engineering. After graduation she hopes to become an engineer in power electronics, but says that working in the battery field may now be an option. “I found my research on batteries at CAR interesting and meaningful,” said Cai. “I would like to further learn more about it if I have the chance!”