High Efficiency Electric Power Manager for Man-Portable Photovoltaic Systems

Period of Performance: 01/23/2014 - 07/23/2014

$150K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Apecor
12612 Challenger Pkwy Suite 350
Orlando, FL 32826
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Apecor will develop an advanced portable power manager for rapid field recharging of military rechargeable batteries from foldable photovoltaic (PV) panels as well as scavenged energy from any available power source. This power manager will be to directly support the soldier by reducing the necessary burden of carried batteries, and reduce the logistical burden of transporting energy to the field of battle. The power manager must be extremely efficient, integrate advanced multi-objective digital control techniques, implement high speed maximum power point tracking (MPPT), and have the ability to connect to an ad-hoc power sharing network between multiple power managers so as to improve operational effectiveness. Apecor has developed and currently manufactures a high performance PV battery charger for the BB-XX90 battery which has been shown to exceed the performance of comparable products drastically (30%-50% faster charging) due to advanced high speed MPPT and digital control algorithms. This new technology will integrate Apecor's proven state -of-the-art MPPT and solar battery charge algorithms with a new soft switching bidirectional DC-DC converter topology, advanced magnetic components, high density electronic packaging and cooling technology, high performance digital control and power management techniques, and a rugged yet low cost enclosure design.