Cell Guard

Thermal Runaway Sensors

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Manufacturer: METIS Engineering

Battery safety sensor

    • Absolute Pressure
    • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
    • Humidity
    • Dew Point
    • Air Temperature
    • Acceleration

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Cell Guard is a unique sensor that provides accurate and detailed information about the health of a lithium-ion battery, improving its longevity. It can also detect cell venting, an early sign of catastrophic battery failure, significantly reducing the risk of thermal runaway.

Unlike current battery cell monitoring systems (BMS), which typically offer only temperature and voltage sensors, Cell Guard monitors a range of environmental parameters necessary to ensure the battery continues to operate optimally. These include Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC), pressure variation, humidity, dew point, and an optional accelerometer to record impact loads.

These data can be cross-checked with other inputs, such as cell temperatures and pressure spikes, to identify cell venting. The sensor transmits data via a configurable CAN interface to a control unit, such as the vehicle's ECU. This can then generate an alert to notify the driver within seconds that cell venting has occurred. The sensor can also initiate the process to cut the circuit to the battery pack, allowing it to cool down to prevent thermal runaway.

Cell Guard's accelerometer can monitor impact loads up to 24 G and the duration of the impact the battery pack might experience, reducing costly scrap. This information can revolutionize the used electric vehicle resale market, providing buyers with the necessary clarity to make informed decisions about the battery pack's condition and maintenance. It can also offer a broader view of battery conditions for reuse, recycling, and any subsequent insurance claims.

Furthermore, Cell Guard can monitor the dew point in the battery pack and trigger an alert before condensation settles on the battery terminals, which could cause short circuits and thermal incidents.

The sensor also features a programmable pin that can control the relay if a threshold is reached. The sensor has a low-power mode that silently continues to monitor the pack; if a threshold is reached, the sensor starts transmitting on CAN, meaning it can wake up a vehicle in case of an issue detection.

Current Battery Management System (BMS) Limitations

sensore per batterie METIS

While electric vehicle battery packs already have a Battery Management System (BMS), this system may have limitations when it comes to monitoring the health of the battery pack. For instance, temperature sensors may only be present for a few cells, making it difficult to detect issues promptly. Detecting cell problems through voltage fluctuations can also be challenging in the short term because other cells in parallel can support the voltage, masking problems with a single cell. Cell Guard can overcome this limitation by integrating with the BMS, providing more detailed information about the health of individual cells.

Certified to automotive ISO standards, Cell Guard is produced in the UK under stringent quality control conditions to meet the orders from a rapidly growing number of OEMs and Tier 1, where they are used in ASIL B applications.

With Cell Guard, Metis Engineering is setting a new standard for advanced battery monitoring in electric vehicles and energy storage systems. Enhancing safety, reducing risks, and providing an unparalleled view of battery conditions will provide peace of mind to both electric vehicle drivers and ESS manufacturers, contributing to the wider adoption of electric vehicles and energy storage systems.

Metis Engineering's sensors are used in a wide range of applications, including Bloodhound LSR, Brompton Bicycles, high-performance electric aircraft, motorsport events such as Formula E and the World Rally Championship, energy storage systems, and autonomous vehicles.

Cell Guard has been developed in accordance with ISO26262 and tested to rigourous Automotive Standards.

Cell Guard video


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Phone +39 02 3340 0846
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Rho 20017, Italy
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+39 02 3340 0846

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