Chevy volt uses LDS vibration test system for electric vehicle battery durability tests

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General Motors

General Motors, one of the world’s largest automakers, traces its roots back to 1908. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 204,000 people in every major region of the world and does business in some 140 countries. GM and its strategic partners produce cars and trucks in 34 countries, and sell and service these vehicles through the following brands – Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Italy.

General Motors has long experience with electric vehicles starting with the electric concept car Impact which was introduced at the 1990 Los Angeles Auto Show. By 1996, the design had evolved into GM’s EV1. The EV1, produced and leased by the General Motors Corporation from 1996 to 1999, was the first mass-produced and purpose-designed electric vehicle of the modern era from a major automaker, and the first GM car designed to be an electric vehicle from the outset.

The Chevrolet Volt – Impressive Performance

The Chevrolet Volt is an electrical vehicle. Hailed as the spiritual and technological successor to the EV1, it will be launched in November 2010 as a 2011 model and has a “Voltec” extended range propulsion system.

Anthony (Tony) Cullen has worked for GM for 20 years, mainly for the Milford Proving Ground Group. He has been involved with the GM-Volt battery vibration test lab since it came online in the second quarter of last year. Today, he is Lead Test Engineer for the vibration room in the laboratory. The battery test lab has seven Lead Test Engineers, four of whom are dedicated to battery testing, and one each for cell, vibration and abuse testing. GM has announced that it will expand the battery test lab in Warren to almost double the size and add capacity during the coming months. The current, state-of-the art lab began operations in January 2009 and is used by more than 1000 engineers to test cells, modules, and entire packs.

Tony says, “The development of the Volt is unique with its on-board generator. It uses kinetic energy to charge the lithium-ion batteries and a standard Volt in urban driving conditions will do 40 miles [64 km] on a full battery charge”. He continues, “Once the energy in the battery reaches a specific level, the on-board 1.4 litre gasoline engine takes over and powers a generator to supplement the battery. The engine and generator now supply power for the vehicle, and everything is automatically controlled by sophisticated onboard computer systems”.

The Volt production line, located at the Cadillac plant in Detroit is now being finalised and GM also recently announced a $43 million investment in Brownstown Township, Michigan to manufacture the required lithiumion battery packs. GM will also become the first major US automaker to produce its own electric motors, with a $246 million facility in Baltimore, Maryland planned for 2013.

General Motors, one of the world’s largest automakers, traces its roots back to 1908. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 204,000 people in every major region of the world and does business in some 140 countries. GM and its strategic partners produce cars and trucks in 34 countries, and sell and service these vehicles through the following brands – Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Italy.

General Motors has long experience with electric vehicles starting with the electric concept car Impact which was introduced at the 1990 Los Angeles Auto Show. By 1996, the design had evolved into GM’s EV1. The EV1, produced and leased by the General Motors Corporation from 1996 to 1999, was the first mass-produced and purpose-designed electric vehicle of the modern era from a major automaker, and the first GM car designed to be an electric vehicle from the outset.

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