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EnergyTube - Intelligent Energy Storage

EnergyTube enables to build up an organic, self-constructed power grid with swarm intelligence. For applications like solar storage, charging stations, emergency power supply or isolated power plants.

ropa engineering GmbH launched a new product: EnergyTube, already praised at the eCarTec Award 2013 in the category "storage technology and system integration".

Goal of ropa engineering GmbH was, to create a standard package and to find a size that fits many applications. The company states that the real revolution of EnergyTube is the integrated sensor, the electronics and software. By using this intelligent combination, EnergyTube would monitor itself and provide swarm-intelligent based communication drive to an organic, self-constructed power grid.

>> watch product photos (flickr)

Organic Network with Swarm Intelligence
"The swarm intelligence knows no hierarchies", describes ropa engineering GmbH. "A single EnergyTube communicates primaly with the previous / next EnergyTube. This, the communication network is reduced greatly and the information flows directly through the organic network to the consumer`s device. In this way, networks do not require a controller or master, cause each EnergyTube has an "integrated intelligence" for self-monitoring and organizing the network itself as well as communicating changes to the electrical load.

Technical Details
• 48V rated voltage (maximum voltage <60V)
• 100Wh

• 70mm diameter
• 180mm length
• 800g weight
• 200W continous / 2400W peak power (depending on the cells used)

Easy to Service
The inner-tube is described as easy to service by ropa engineering GmbH. "The cell packing, connectors, electronics and housing can be optimally adapted to the application. The cyclindrical structure combines the advantages of being resistant to vibration and falls and makes an external security system dispensable."

No interior current-carrying Cables
ropa engineering GmbH states that the internal structure of EnergyTube was only possible by dispensing all current-carrying cables to reduces the risk of short circuit.

Further description of ropa engineering GmbH: "The 18650 cells, within EnergyTube are arranged in a ring order. Advantage of the annular array is a homogenous temperature distribution because the outer surface for all 12 cells is identical. The revolver-type insulator, in which the cells are inserted, provides a robust, well-insulated, vibration-proof packaging of cells and is optimized for mass production. Regardless of cell chemistries, EnergyTube can be application-specific fitted with 18650 cells. The fusion of connectors, electronics and housing elements provide an integrated design.

The magnetic cell connector system at both ends of EnergyTube has 3 poles, in particular a battery +, battery -, and 12V auxiliary voltage. The number and arrangement of current contacts are dimensioned to withstand a 60A continuous load. To disconnect the solenoid plug only, a slight kink motion is needed. The connector is designed for non-contact data transmission via NFC. This concept of wireless data transmission ensures, to transfer measurement data, unit-describing properties and control values as well as indentification an communication data between the batteries."

Build Arbitrarily Large Networks
Due to the modular scalability of EnergyTube, it would not matter whether the user wants to supply small or large applications. The system capability of EnergyTube would allow easy to connect multiple tubes and Energy to build arbitrarily large networks via simple magnetic plugs. EnergyTube would provide high performance at small space and would be completely voltage-independent.

ropa engineering GmbH chose the capacity limit of a single EnergyTube so that it is not within any dangerous goods classification. This would enable the use in any composite, without violating the hazardous classification. With an integrated self-diagnostic function and the use fo standard cells, EnergyTube would offer a good service capability.

Target Groups
ropa engineering GmbH sees many companies from industry and economy, which act as licensee and distributor as target groups. For example manufacturers of recreational vehicles, stationary battery storage and mobile machines. Due to the high proportion of lead-acid battery in these sectors (> 90%), these markets would be  especially interesting. The European Government Directive 2000/53/Eg provides to replace heavy metals such as lead in vehicles if there exists an alternative." Furthermore, the product would be interesting for the automotive industry (starter and traction batteries) and also manufacturers of power tools, etc. would be predistined customers for the product.

Due to the unique identification and central management, it would be possible to build battery swapping and exchange systems for EnergyTubes. Fully automated replacing or refueling of EnergTubes with methods from the beverage industry or air pneumatic tube would be conceivable here.

About ropa engineering GmbH
ropa engineering GmbH is part of the ROPA holding company and is engaged in the development of batteries and battery-drive systems. The managing director Johannes Dörndorfer is also head of development. Since 1992 he is into electrical mobility. As co-founder of ExtraEnergy e.V. and EnergyBus e.V. he promotes the topic of electric mobility and has designed necessary standards. Since 2002, Johannes Dörndorfer is busy with large lithium batteries and has co-developed EnergyBus necessary standards ahead for communication and energy-management of networked battery systems. He also had the basic ideas for the international security standard, BATSO, in terms of battery safety and later important rules for the future and further development of the market arosed.

ropa engineering GmbH

Tel. +49.7171.10416.0

Fax +49.7171.10416.222



Text and pictures: ropa Engineering GmbH

Online release: Angela Budde

20 December 2013



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