AERIAL PLATFORM AND FORKLIFT TRUCK MANUFACTURERS WON OVER BY EMILIA-ROMAGNA-BASED FLASH BATTERY’S TECHNOLOGY. TODAY, CITIES AND URBAN BUILDING SITES ARE LEADING THE LITHIUM BATTERY FULL-ELECTRIC REVOLUTION IN OPEN SPACES
The world around us is changing and today we are the ones driving the change. We are witnessing era-defining transformations because for the first time in human history, all scientific and industrial progress has to revolve around the key concept of sustainability. Flash Battery has been aware of this for a long time. With its dedication to research and innovation in the field of lithium batteries, it is making a crucial contribution to changes in heavy machinery on building sites across the globe. In Italy, a large number of self-propelled aerial platforms (and forklift trucks, in logistics) are using the power packs designed and produced by Flash Battery in their drive technology. This technological combination complies with the recent regulations enacted by city administrations to eliminate polluting vehicles and equipment from building sites, replacing them with models that use emission- and noise-reducing motors, such as electric or hybrid models.
The road that has put Flash Battery at the cutting-edge of its field has been long and complex. In summarising the results achieved up to now, we have to first mention our choice of Li-Fe-PO4 (lithium-iron-phosphate) battery chemistry, which is the safest and most stable energy source in the market. We’ve said it many times in other articles but it bears repeating: a lithium battery based on this chemistry lasts longer, more than 4,000 charging cycles. What’s more, it is available in the large-capacity formats (100, 200 and 300 Ah) required in industrial applications, eliminating the need to connect many small cells in parallel, which decreases stability and can undermine the battery pack’s general safety.
Medium- and large-sized batteries, from 10 kWh up, are Flash Battery’s core business. Their installation on aerial platforms and other heavy machinery is enhanced by the exclusive Flash Balancing System, a patent-pending balancing system that is 20 times faster than conventional lithium batteries, leading to a drastic reduction in charging time (under 25 minutes). The lithium cells are kept balanced and efficient for the entire life of the battery, with over 4,000 cycles as mentioned above. As a final detail, lithium batteries require zero routine maintenance, so no accessory costs are incurred from equipment downtime and other service requirements.
“We’re in the full-electric era in terms of the propulsion and hydraulic management technology of heavy machinery” says Marco Righi, CEO and founder of Flash Battery.
“This is why guaranteed total efficiency is required of a lithium battery pack, with opportunity charging available any time and fast charging capabilities. These are essential priorities especially in the case of open-air work, given that machinery such as aerial platforms is subject to stringent EU-wide sustainability regulations on urban building site emissions and noise. Therefore, the political and environmental choice of full-electric machines must necessarily coalesce with battery-powered propulsion systems that can ensure the highest levels of efficiency and reliability in any context and for extended work sessions”.
As we mentioned earlier, the exclusive balancing system designed by Flash Battery is unlike that of classic lithium batteries because it equalises the charge level in every cell through a high-power balancing process, in both charging and discharging.
The reliability and efficiency profile of Flash Battery’s lithium solutions is what has driven many of the top manufacturers of aerial platforms and forklift trucks to use them for their electric models.
“Our expertise brings us to engage in a constant exchange with customers”, explains Marco Righi. “We have a distinctive way of working: we first interpret the specific needs of the machinery manufacturer and then propose the most suitable solution for their requirements. Our power pack projects are real partnerships; they are the result of a shared process, with no standardisation whatsoever”.
For the most far-sighted manufacturers, Flash Battery has become the ideal vehicle to the building site of the future. Take, for example, the CAP Group based in Magnago, in the Milan area: it has adopted a method that uses low-emission impact machines and materials and a waste management cycle based on circular economy principles to manage their utility line construction sites, creating a virtuous circle. Or the Oslo city administration in Northern Europe, which has just opened a big urban construction site (Olav V) that uses all-electric excavators and other tracked construction machines.
Flash Battery has paved a clear, leading-edge path that includes state-of-the-art service innovations. One of these is the Flash Data Center, the portal created to store the battery’s usage data and which can be accessed via the Internet by Flash Battery’s assistance department and by the manufacturer of the machine. The service makes it possible to analyse and control, from remote, the state of use of every single battery and accurately monitor the lithium battery’s state of health. Another one is the Automatic Alert System, which allows intervening significantly in advance on anomalies by performing automatic predictive maintenance. These innovations work synergistically to raise the level of control dynamics for lithium batteries, making them more efficient and competitive. For a sustainable, building site-proof future.
Battery Show, the leading edge of the industry at Stuttgart
Stuttgart is the place to be for the next 2020 Battery Show, the biggest European trade show devoted to battery production and the most advanced technologies in the field, taking place from 28-30 April. The event brings together the top international manufacturers across the entire battery supply chain. This year, the Battery Show will be sharing the spaces of the Messe Stuttgart with the Electric & Hybrid Show, which will be accenting the technological importance of the event. Flash Battery will be one of the leading exhibitors at Pavilion 2, Booth C420.