General Motors is making a volt stabilization systems standard on select vehicles that feature start-stop system.
Initially offered on model year 2016 Cadillac ATS and CTS sedans and ATS coupes, Continental Automotive Systems’ Maxwell-powered voltage stabilization system (VSS), the ultracapacitor-based voltage stabilization as part of the enhanced start-stop system, which lowers fuel costs, improves performance and reduces emissions, delivering an overall superior owner-driver experience.
“Performance has always been important to car owners, and Maxwell’s ultracapacitors enable consumers to get the fuel economy they desire without limiting their cars’ performance,” says Dr. Franz Fink, CEO of Maxwell Technologies. “GM’s selection of Continental’s Maxwell-powered VSS is a further affirmation of our ultracapacitor capability for varying applications as the automotive industry continues down its path of vehicle electrification.”
In start-stop systems, the internal combustion engine is shut off when the driver stops and the engine is seamlessly restarted when the driver accelerates, which lowers emissions and improves fuel economy. Battery-based start-stop systems augmented with an ultracapacitor-based voltage stabilization system implementation provide burst power needed to restart the engine, thus reducing high currents and repeated cycling that can shorten battery life. The voltage stabilization electronic control results in a smooth start, reduced engine vibration and a superior driving experience. Maxwell’s ultracapacitors, in Continental’s VSS design, also serve as an additional power source for stabilizing the vehicle’s electrical system during periods of high power demand.
Unlike batteries, which produce and store energy by means of a chemical reaction, ultracapacitors store energy in an electric field. This electrostatic energy storage mechanism enables ultracapacitors to charge and discharge in as little as fractions of a second, perform normally over a broad temperature range (-40 degrees C to +65 degrees C), operate reliably through 1 million or more charge/discharge cycles and resist shock and vibration.