NREL's Isothermal Battery Calorimeters are Crucial Tools for Advancing Electric-Drive Vehicles (Fact Sheet)

    Research output: NRELFact Sheet


    NREL's innovative Isothermal Battery Calorimeters (IBCs) are the only calorimeters in the world capable of performing the precise thermal measurements needed to make safer, longer-lasting, and more cost-effective batteries for the next generation of electric-drive vehicles. Now being commercialized in collaboration with NETZSCH, the IBCs are the most accurate devices of their kind and are capableof testing a wide size range of samples. The calorimeters can determine the heat generated by battery cells, modules, sub-packs, and even some full-size packs that produce up to 4 kilowatts of heat. The IBCs can also measure heat rates that are eight orders of magnitudes smaller, as low as 10 milliwatts, and heat inputs as low as 10 Joules - about the amount of energy released while rubbing yourhands together. This degree of sensitivity relies on patent-pending design innovations including superior thermal isolation, designs to channel all of the heat generated through measuring sensors, and the ability to simulate real-world driving conditions without compromising safety. The instrument is able to determine heat levels and battery energy efficiency within 98% of actual values. TheIBCs received a prestigious R&D 100 Award from R&D Magazine in 2013, declaring them to be among the 100 most significant innovations of the year.
    Original languageAmerican English
    StatePublished - 2013

    NREL Publication Number

    • NREL/FS-6A42-59018


    • battery industry
    • battery pack
    • calorimeter
    • Chrysler
    • electric vehicles
    • electric-drive vehicles
    • EV
    • Ford
    • General Motors
    • heat-flux measurement
    • HEV
    • hybrid electric vehicles (HEV)
    • IBC
    • isothermal battery calorimeter
    • PHEV
    • plug-in hybrid
    • R&D 100
    • thermal isolation
    • Thermal Test Facility (TTF)
    • TTF
    • U.S. Advanced Battery Consortium
    • USABC


    Dive into the research topics of 'NREL's Isothermal Battery Calorimeters are Crucial Tools for Advancing Electric-Drive Vehicles (Fact Sheet)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this