02 May 2024

European patent EP 18726032.8

GENEREX managed to obtain a patent again in 2024. Under the EU patent number 18726032.8 with the title “Method and device for battery management and battery with integrated device for battery management”, GENEREX has the sole right to manufacture, distribute or license products with this function within the EU.
The function described in this patent is used by the "SMARTLOGGER" or the version integrated in the battery, which is then called "SMARTBATTERY". It is currently the only system on the EU market that can store battery data for life without contact using NFC (Near Field Communication) and meets the rules for an “EU Battery Passport”.

The new EU battery law will increase the requirements for the battery industry and battery users from 2024

Many manufacturers have been aware for a long time that a new EU regulation for batteries would come, but in many places, they ignored it or perhaps held onto the hope that it would be overturned after all. Superficially, the new EU law is aimed primarily at electromobility, whose batteries are mostly based on lithium and are therefore viewed with skepticism: the true origin of such drive batteries is sometimes not always clear when imported, and the user is required to provide information about them to provide information required by the EU.
The following applies to batteries: the higher the energy density per battery, the lower the permissible tolerances for fluctuations in operation!
However, the new EU Battery Regulation 2024 has far-reaching consequences for all providers in this industry, not only for environmental reasons but also for safety reasons: Numerous optimizations within battery chemistry now allow high energy densities, although often at the limits of technology.

This may not be as critical for lead-based batteries, where BACS and SMARTLOGGER are mainly used, since the energy density is not as high as with lithium-based batteries. But the requirements of the Battery Ordinance are binding here too: From 2024, providers of battery-supported systems will be obliged to ensure that production, storage and transport conditions are adhered to before a battery is sent to the customer. By 2026, there will also be complete proof up to disposal in order to prevent damaged or defective batteries from being “secretly” put into circulation. This monitoring - "from the cradle to the grave" - is required in particular by the EU regulation from 2024 and is to be attached to every battery placed on the market in the EU in a "battery passport" that can be read electronically.  SMARTLOGGER and SMARTBATTERY already offer a solution for these new requirements for the battery industry.

New requirements for the battery industry

The “SMARTLOGGER” is the heart of a “SMARTBATTERY” and is installed at the factory. The SMARTLOGGER is also available as a licensed and patented technology for battery manufacturers and battery importers with their own battery series with enough space for the electronics. It can be used for all lead, NiCd and lithium-based batteries and meets the new EU regulations.

(Please also read our article “EU Regulation on Batteries” in this newsletter)

Since the SMARTBATTERY cannot be reset or manipulated by design, the measurement data is an incorruptible witness to the use and treatment of the battery and is therefore invaluable with regard to warranty disputes!

The SMARTBATTERY technology is activated in the first hours of production at the factory or from initialization at the customer's site and writes its data into a specially protected and non-erasable memory. This means that the vital functions (voltage, temperature) of a battery are recorded at configurable intervals during the production process, making the entire production and delivery process, as well as storage and transport conditions before and after sale, transparent. This and all subsequent data remain available for the life of the battery.
The use of SMARTBATTERY enables the battery manufacturer to offer increased operational guarantees and reliability, as its own quality is constantly monitored and documented. Simply because the performance can be verified by the user, a SMARTBATTERY is demonstrably better than any other battery without such technology - and therefore of higher quality and safer !
The SMARTBATTERY is compatible with almost all current battery chemistries and provides the manufacturer with otherwise missing insight into production, storage and transport. It can be categorically proven that a battery has not suffered any hidden damage during production, transport or storage due to improper handling and this for a period of up to 10 years. Additionally, since each battery contains a unique and tamper-proof serial number, battery providers can collect supply chain information to demonstrate compliance with EU and national safety guidelines for transport, installation and recycling. At the end of its use life, the stored data can be used to prove that the battery was disposed of properly.

=> The “passport” of a battery is the SMARTLOGGER

Optionally, a SMARTBATTERY can also have an installation slot for expansion cards, for example to use an “iBACS” system (“Integrated BACS”) or other BMS from other providers and transfer the recorded measurement data.
If the SMARTBATTERY interface is equipped with “iBACS”, data collection and archiving continue in parallel, but the “iBACS” module also serves data.
GENEREX opens the patented SMARTLOGGER technology to all BMS providers, giving battery manufacturers the opportunity to use more than just GENEREX “iBACS” for their SMARTBATTERY models.
The new EU requirements for the battery industry also result in new opportunities for battery service technicians!

Picture: SMARTBATTERY (in blue) with integrated SMARTLOGGER, high-voltage fuses and interface (an 8-pin connector) to the “iBACS” BACS module for optional insertion into the SMARTBATTERY.

New opportunity for battery service

With the SMARTBATTERY and SMARTLOGGER, GENEREX introduced a flexible and modular battery monitoring solution that allows technicians not only to track the general battery condition, but also to directly check the actual condition of the battery during on-site installation.
The SMARTBATTERY and SMARTLOGGER allow the technician to directly measure the capacity of batteries at the same time without complex measurement setups. Every battery that has been equipped with SMARTBATTERY technology can be read within a few seconds via the “SMARTBATTERY Companion APP” via NFC and is evaluated and graphically prepared in an EXCEL file.

Picture: SMARTLOGGER with FASTON 6.3mm (also available with ring cable lugs in various sizes and lengths) andSMART LOGGERwith “crocodile clips” for battery service technicians to record data during a capacity test of UPS batteries.

The SMARTBATTERY COMPANION APP in the Google Playstore immediately provides all important information about the operating and health status. To do this, the batteries to be monitored must either already be “SMART”, i.e. already have the SMARTLOGGER installed - or be retrofitted with a SMARTLOGGER.

Difference to SMARTBATTERY:

The SMARTLOGGER is functionally identical to the SMARTBATTERY but is intended for retrofitting AND/OR for the battery service technician as a “tool” for battery tests.

  • The SMARTLOGGER does not have an interface for an iBACS module, in order to then expand this to a BACS system
  • In contrast to the SMARTBATTERY, the SMARTLOGGER can be “reset” by the technician (not the serial number and ID), so it is not “married” to the battery for life when it is first used, but can be used again on a different battery at any time. This makes the SMARTLOGGER a “tool” and is ideal for a battery capacity test or for temporary monitoring of installations. Note: Resetting a SMARTLOGGER to use it for a new measurement on other batteries is reserved for the battery service technician with a special version of the SMARTBATTERY COMPANION APP and can only be used on non-hardened versions of the SMARTLOGGER. For this type of application, we offer the SMARTLOGGER with "crocodile clips" - as opposed to ring terminals, which are used for permanent installation and cannot be reset. For this type of application, we offer the SMARTLOGGER with “crocodile clips” – in contrast to ring cable lugs, which are used for permanent mounting and therefore can not accept a RESET.

In this way, a service technician can measure and document battery systems on site much more accurately with significantly less effort. After all data has been “collected”, the SMARTLOGGER is reset to the delivery state using an APP command and is ready for use by the next customer.

NEW: SMARTBATTERY Companion App 3.0


Since SMART technology is part of the battery, the SMARTLOGGER continuously stores operating data for the respective battery and provides all the necessary data via NFC in order to be able to make a statement about the need for action. The storage capacity is up to 10 years.
The current battery data and recordings are transferred and evaluated directly to any Android phone or NFC reader via the SMARTBATTERY COMPANION APP and an NFC interface.
SMARTBATTERY technology offers significant cost advantages over a traditional BMS with the limitation that the data must be retrieved by the technician using NFC and is not available in the network without using the interface.

Capacity test

The capacity test can be used to calculate what capacity could be removed from the battery after a discharge.

Function of capacity test:

Simply connect the SMARTLOGGER to the battery and click “START” in the app to test the capacity. It can be configured at which voltage a “discharge” should automatically be recognized (START Voltage) and when the discharge should be considered ended (End Voltage). You can also configure the voltage at which the full charge state is reached again (Full Charge Volt) and the sampling rate at which this is recorded (60, 30, 10, 1 second). The “Lithium BMS Mode” takes into account the special features of lithium-based batteries whose internal BMS temporarily switches off the battery (if the load is too high/low, temperature problems, etc.)

When the set limits are reached, the SMARTLOGGER / SMARTBATTERY will increase the recording frequency and discharge recording begins. After the end of the discharge, the APP calculates the capacity drawn in Ah from the beginning to the end of the discharge.

For further analysis, the battery data can be exported in a file from your mobile phone using standard technologies such as email or messenger services.

Pictures: After the capacity test has been successfully carried out, the results can be displayed and the available capacity can then be determined using the measuring points using the app.

Battery data automatically prepared for your battery report to the customer

The battery data can be downloaded using “SMARTBATTERY EXPORTER” – a freely available Windows program from the GENEREX website (SMARTBATTERY | Generex) in an EXCEL file can be converted
NEW: A new service will be available from mid-2024 that will automate this conversion and send the file back within minutes in converted form, as shown in the example on the right.
The voltage and temperature curve with the set limit values ​​is displayed in this EXCEL graphic and allows deep discharges or other limit value violations to be easily identified over the entire lifespan of the battery.
The Black box &Fitness Tracker Combo: With the SMARTBATTERY you can record the path of a battery from the factory “from the cradle to the grave” and meet the upcoming EU guidelines for the traceability of problematic substances.

What else have we improved with SMARTBATTERY Companion APP 3.0?

  1. Name change "SMARTBATTERY Companion": The name of the APP has been changed - in addition, the APP can now also be found under this name in the GOOGLE Playstore under the search terms "iBACS", "SMARTBATTERY" and "SMARTLOGGER" or simply "GENEREX"
  2. The welcome screen now shows that this APP complies with the EU directive for a BatteryPassport. Whether this function is "activated" or not depends on the version of the SMARTLOGGER, the version with "crocodile clips" for the battery service technician has not activated the passport.
  3. "LOG" function has been improved to be able to process very large data packets >200k/>10 years. The LOGRATE setting can now be changed individually. In addition, the basic LOGFILE is now always retrieved immediately when a battery is read in.
  4. From 2025 a new SMARTBATTERY EXPORTER from the GENEREX website converts all data into Microsoft EXCEL compatible data and automatically generates EXCEL graphics that can be used directly in a service report. The SHARE button can now be used to send individual batteries as well as the entire group.
  5. BATTERY GROUPS: The "ADD GROUP" function creates a separate battery group for each customer, in which all measurement results can be collected or moved to other groups using drag'n'drop. This makes it possible to manage larger battery systems for different customers on a cell phone using the Android phone - until the data has been exported and processed in battery reports. Sorting has also been improved. STANDARD GROUPS can now be created in which all newly scanned batteries are automatically inserted. The last battery read in is highlighted and deletion can now be carried out individually or in groups.
  6. Individual battery threshold values: The user can now define their own threshold values from which the "battery" display should change from green to orange/red.
  7. Individual battery names: From HW 2.12, each battery can be given an individual name and the number of discharge cycles is displayed
  8. Acoustic read/write confirmation: An acoustic signal is now emitted during the read process to indicate whether it was successful or needs to be repeated. The error message on the display no longer has to be read first, the sound already indicates whether it was successful or not.