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  • Writer's pictureProject Fig-Leaf

Building a battery

After being sent back to square one with the Prius battery, it was time to think outside the box. I should start by saying that a working Prius battery would be by far the best option for testing so make sure to check the battery you buy is working. Thankfully the Prius high voltage junction box (HVJB) that came with it was still in tact and working (more on that in a future post)

We needed a battery to test the Leaf's components with. The battery's voltage would need to be greater than 144v to power the Leaf's inverter. Inspired by Richard Mawby's G-Wiz battery made from recycled laptop cells, I decided to do the same. As part of a previous project, I bought several used and dead laptop batteries from a local IT shop. These batteries were carefully dismantled and tested to find out which cells still had life left in them. Just like with EVs, every battery is different according to how it was made and the life they have lived. A good battery is made up from many cells of the same kind that are all in balance. With as many cells as this would need I turned to to create a completely balanced pack.

Limited by the number and quality of cells that were available, I built 4 batteries, each with 12 rows of 10 cells in series. This meant carefully welding 480 cells. Once this was done we were finally ready to being testing.


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