Automatic evacuation, filling and test system for cooling systems with thermal management system of electric fuel cell vehicles

August 18, 2021
HR 1024x683
Helmuth Ramp

Cooling systems in modern vehicles are becoming more and more complex and expensive, and error-free and fault-free operation is essential. For example, the efficient and low-emission operation of the internal combustion engine is only possible if it reaches its operating temperature as quickly as possible and can maintain it in all load states. This is ensured by the cooling system, which also supplies the passenger compartment with heat. The cooling systems of most modern electric vehicles are even more complex. So that an electric vehicle can be operated with a particularly high degree of efficiency, it is necessary to keep the temperature of the electric motor, the power electronics and the battery in a temperature range that is optimal for efficiency. In order to guarantee this, a sophisticated thermal management system is required.

In the automotive industry, vehicles are usually filled with the required operating media (such as brake fluid, refrigerant for the air conditioning system, coolant, windshield washer fluid, etc.) in the last section of final assembly (usually when it is already on its own wheels). The challenge here is to check the empty vehicle systems for leaks within a short period of time and to fill them with the prescribed quantities and fill levels in a fully automated and thus process-reliable manner. In closed circuits (such as the cooling system), this takes place over several process steps with vacuum and pressure phases. The process steps themselves have not changed fundamentally over the years, but the vehicle systems themselves have become significantly larger and more complex in order to represent comfort functions or to cool additional control units.

Kvba 01 1 1024x768

Helmuth Ramp, sales manager, explains how  the KVBA automatic evacuation, filling and test system from Autotestgeräte Leitenberger, can fulfill this challenge

With this device which  is now on the market we have geared it precisely to these increased manufacturer requirements and specifically developed it for the cooling system and thermal management system of fuel cell vehicles and electric vehicles. Great importance has been attached to the following points in particular:

  • Quality assurance and error minimization through specified processes and standardized procedures (process reliability)
  • Documentation of the filling and the parameters (quality management)
  • Reduction of process costs through effective and fast testing and filling
  • User-friendly operation

It can be used for the initial filling in production as well as for reworking or for small series and test stands as well as in development.

It has a modular structure and is e.g. very easy to use thanks to the use of quick-release couplings. Mobile use is also possible thanks to the practical trolley and variable compressed air hoses and power cables. The technology is suitable for filling both “wet” and “dry” systems and ensures that the system is statically and dynamically checked for leaks. With the help of the KVBA, filling / testing procedures (development / process planning) can be developed and standardized. A user-independent, reproducible and fast filling result is guaranteed by the optional fully automatic or manual process sequence.

We also offer pressure tests to the user, such as

  • static pressure test when deflated
  • vacuum test
  • Pressure test when filled
  • pulsating pressure test when filled

Intelligently controlled:

The system is controlled via a touch display using a graphical user interface on an external computer. On the “admin level”, individual filling and test procedures can be quickly generated and saved. The stored filling and test procedures can be used, called and started at the “user level”. Computer software is available to control the device, with which the parameters for the individual functions can be selected, set and saved as a parameter list. The user can perform the steps either manually or automatically with the aid of a parameter list. The most important data (current step, current pressure in the system, current time, total duration) are all provided.

When it comes to carrying out, facilitating and optimizing measurement, analysis and repair work on vehicles or engines, our special tools are used worldwide. Each product is developed with the highest demands on functionality, durability and ergonomics.

“When it comes to carrying out, facilitating and optimizing measurement, analysis and repair work on vehicles or engines, our special tools are used worldwide. Each product is developed with the highest demands on functionality, durability and ergonomics..Based on this know-how, we use our experience and competence and increasingly develop and produce devices for high-voltage technology. The ever-growing market for electric and hybrid vehicles means that tools and measurement techniques are being developed that are used in this particular topic, such as tools and measuring devices for Insulation capability measurements; Leak test of battery housings; Assessment of the coolant quality, Leak testing of battery housings and evacuation and filling“ Helmuth concluded.

The special tools made by Leitenberger are used worldwide to carry out, facilitate and optimise measurement, analysis and repair work on vehicles or engines. Every product is developed with the highest standards of functionality, longevity, ergonomics and safety. Founded 50 years ago as a small family business, the Leitenberger corporate group is now a globally active company with factories in Germany and Greece.

2024 Latest Issue

Read & Download

2024 Spring EV News Magazine

Engage with the Pioneers & Innovators who are making the shift to electrified transportation a reality.


Check out my other articles

The use of Simulation in BMS and ADAS

The use of Simulation in BMS and ADAS

Dr Christophe Bianchi Closing the Gap Between Design and Reality The world’s automakers are racing to launch new EV models, and many of the engineering challenges around EVs centre on the electric...

Urban mobility in 2050

Urban mobility in 2050

Urban mobility in 2050 The difficulties of predicting the next transportation revolution Roger Brereton History is awash with examples of predictions about technology that went spectacularly wrong....