Market survey

China: Overview of new energy vehicle drive electric control industry

| Author / Editor: Gasgoo / Franziska Breunig

The introduction of electric control system
The introduction of electric control system (Source: auto.gasgoo.com)

Supported by national policies advocating the development of new energy vehicles, the entire new energy vehicle industry is in a trend of prosperous development. China is the largest market of new energy vehicles and Chinese enterprises compete with foreign enterprises at the same starting line for the first time by relying on new energy vehicles.

The control technology for drive motor as the important component of a new energy vehicle decides the width and breadth of new energy vehicles in the future development of the industry and its importance is understood without being told.

First, the motor controller can make the scope of application of motors wider, their output efficiency higher and noise level lower. This is mainly because that the motor is controlled by the active operation of the integrated circuit in the set direction, speed, angle, response time, etc. Its cost accounts approximately for 9.5% of that of the new energy vehicle and is twice as high as that of the drive motor.

As the power conversion unit connecting the battery with motor in the new energy vehicle, the motor controller is of great importance understood without being told. It can be considered as the core of the motor driving and control system. Its critical techniques mainly include power semi-conductor module, motor control algorithm, etc.

As the core component of the motor controller, the power device has a cost accounting for the majority of that of the entire controller and power semi-conductor devices will follow the development trend of having higher frequencies and full control.

Currently a power semi-conductor module mainly employs the IGBT module. It is a modularized semi-conductor product made by bridging and packaging the IGBT (insulated gate bipolar translator) with FWD (freewheeling diode) via a specific circuit. From the figure above, it can be seen that European, North America and Japanese enterprises take the absolutely dominating position in the IGBT market thanks to high quality and leading technology and are primary suppliers of IGBT to Chinese market.

However, with market stimulation and the support from national policies, some IGBT manufacturers also emerged in China and made certain achievements. For example, Zhuzhou CRRC Times Electric Co., Ltd. acquired Dynes with 50 years of history of the research and development of power devices; BAIC BJEV signed the strategic cooperation agreement with Zhuzhou CRRC Times Electric Co., Ltd. controlled by CRRC in Zhuzhou; BYD signed the strategic industry ally cooperation agreement with Shanghai Advanced Semi-conductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd. to jointly build the IGBT domestication industry chain. This suggests that the IGBT domestication will be a dominating trend in the future.

As the core component of drive system, the motor controller follows a development trend of higher performance and lower cost. Additionally, with the prosperity of global new energy vehicle market, the new energy vehicle motor control market also grows. According to predictions, the market value of global motor controllers can reach 8.0 billion US dollars.

Gasgoo Automobile Institute found that most electric control suppliers are also motor suppliers among main engine manufacturers because motors and electric controls need to be efficiently matched. Therefore, integrated supply of motors and electric controls will be the inevitable development trend of new energy vehicles.

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