STMicroelectronics, IMECAS, and EPOCH have announced a joint effort to develop and market a battery management system for new energy vehicles (NEV). IMECAS is a state-owned research & development institute in China while EPOCH is a technology company working on electric vehicle batteries, battery management systems (BMS), and fire-proof system solutions.

The companies plan to develop a battery controller using an advanced Smart Power (BCD) technology and ST's SPC5x automotive microcontrollers. This controller will be developed in close cooperation with Chinese battery makers and carmakers and aims to meet the market requirements for performance, quality, and reliability.

China is the largest NEV market in the world, with more than 500,000 NEVs sold in 2016. Moreover, the growth planned and foreseen in the future is dramatic, poised to reach two million NEVs in 2020. Battery-monitoring systems, along with related key technologies, including silicon carbide (SiC) for traction and charging, play an important role in securing the safe operation of the battery and vehicle while providing crucial information to drivers.

"Our key components for all the main automotive applications, and especially new energy vehicles that include power technologies, smart drivers, microcontrollers, and control and connectivity solutions, will enable IMECAS and EPOCH to address the ambitious targets of the China 2025 program for the automotive industry," according to Marco Monti, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Automotive and Discrete Group, STMicroelectronics.