The Lexus Battery System in the RX 400h ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: The Lexus Battery System in the RX 400h

Thursday, July 06, 2006

The Lexus Battery System in the RX 400h

The Lexus battery has 30 Nickel Metal Hybride (Ni-MH) modules, each with eight cells that provide 1.2V per cell. The total battery provides 288V and a peak power of 45 kW (the normal automotive battery is 12V).

Current improvements in the 2006 are revisements in the metal case. Toyota has improved the heat rejection and reducing the size and height of the module by 22 percent. The batteries are split into three groups, with a dedicated cooling fan for each group. The battery pack resides under the backseat and the cooling vents are clearly visible.

Since the engine does not run when idling at stop lights, the belt system has been eliminated. Therefore the alternator, power steering pump, water pump and ac compressor require alternate sources of energy.

The alternator and starter motor, were eliminated from the design as unnecessary.

Toyota co-developed a high voltage ac compressor to be powered by the battery pack. The compressor is integrated with a high voltage, 3-phase AC motor and control inverter. The result was 40 percent smaller and 50 percent lighter than conventional electric compressors.

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