SEABAT follows a step wise approach, which will result in three key innovations. 

STEP 1: Overarching system architecture for full-electric hybrid topologies
A cost-effective solution must be based on an architecture that is suitable for a mix of high-power batteries and high-energy batteries:

  • A set-up that is flexible and scalable.
  • The most cost-efficient reliability.
  • The architecture will be suitable for other high-power components, such as ultracapacitors.

The result will be a system architecture that allows a balanced compromise between ship primary energy need, peak power demand and redundancy, giving the capability to design the optimal full hybrid solution for ferries, offshore supply ships, fishing vessels, short-range freight, and inland waterway transport.

STEP 2: Modular high energy and high power battery packs

  • A modular solution, that allows optimisation according to geometry, volume and/or weight, suitable for battery systems of 1 MWh and above,
  • Lowering the hardware costs by using standardized off-the-shelf modular components (exploiting economies of scale) as far as possible.
  • Smart integration and smart manufacturing processes.
  • Designing for disassembly and second life applications.

The result will be an optimal full-electric hybrid modular solution, minimising the battery footprint and reducing the oversizing.

STEP 3: Designing and developing novel converter concepts:
The converter concepts studied in the project include:

  • A converter integrated into a battery module, transforming the module into a controllable voltage source. The integration requires balancing compactness and heat load versus efficiency and cost.
  • Switching individual cells to achieve e.g. a near-constant DC voltage. The switch needs to be developed for robustness and efficiency, together with the proper control.
  • A partial power converter, where existing concepts need to be upscaled to MWs, developed for bidirectional flow (charging and discharging) and integrated with (over)voltage protection circuits..

STEP 4: Developing a battery management system (BMS) that can handle a range of hybrid battery lay-outs:

  • Mapping the large parameter space of possible control strategies that the modular system allows, optimizing the power flow while allowing a maximum flexibility and scalability.
  • Developing the high-level BMS for the selected control strategy.
    Developing the complex algorithms necessary to manage module-related or cell-related information (state of health, depth of discharge, etc), in addition to the tasks of the BMS.
  • Designing for fast charging (up to 6C).

Expected results: a battery management system that is multi-component compatible and extends the battery llifecycle for the same capacity by up to 20% through optimal use of the individual components in the system.

STEP 5: Proving the reduction of the production process costs in an industrial pilot:

  • Module design including packaging material selection, optimised for the lowest TCO (total cost of ownership) for maritime applications, while allowing for second life applications and disassembly.
  • Design of an (semi) automated production line, upscaling existing industrial robotisation solutions to battery packs of 1 MWh and larger.
  • Demonstration of the manufacturing line at TRL 7, including the impact on the TCO.

Expected results: an industrial process to produce cost-effective battery packs for large-scale maritime applications, that is ready for roll-out.

STEP 6: System integration and validation:

  • Validating a 300kWh system (full battery system test) at TRL 5.
  • Virtually validating the solution for batteries of 1 MWh and above, using 300 kWh system P-HiL (Power Hardware in the Loop) tests,
  • Demonstrating that the solution meets all requirements for future certification according to a goal-based approach, with reference to the Guidelines for Formal Safety Assessment (FSA), as applicable,
  • Identifying possible regulatory gaps, proposing amendments and improvements.

Expected results / key innovations:

  • a validated system for capacities of 1 MWh and beyond,
  • a roadmap for type approval and a strategy towards standardization for (among others) ferries and short sea shipping.
  • A techno-economic assessment proving a 35-50% lower total cost of ownership of maritime battery systems, including 15-30% lower CAPEX investment, 50% lower costs of integration at the shipyard and a 5% investment cost recuperation after the useful life in the vessel

Read more on the project structure.