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BIS rolls out new performance standards for electric vehicles to reduce fire accidents

BIS rolls out new performance standards for electric vehicles to reduce fire accidents

Amid mounting cases of electric vehicles catching fire in several parts of India, the Bureau of Indian Standards has come up with new performance standards for EVs. Titled “Performance Standards for Electric Vehicle Batteries,” the new guidelines will ensure the safety of EV users. The new standards also involve test procedures for batteries that determine their basic characteristic of performance, reliability, and electrical functionality.

According to officials, the standard “IS 17855: 2022” has been formulated for lithium-ion traction battery packs and systems of electrically-propelled road vehicles. The new standard falls in line with ISO 12405-4: 2018. The standard takes into account real-world scenarios for electric vehicles, such as vehicles parked in a space wherein their battery has not been used for a long time, the battery system stored or shipped, and battery operations at low and high temperatures. The tests have been formulated according to these situations.

The new standards will lay out parameters for specifications on battery size, connectors, quality of cells, and the capacity of the batteries in electric vehicles. With the battery swapping policy already in place, the new standards will give manufacturers clarity about the final quality of batteries.

Earlier this month, Rohit Kumar Singh, secretary at the Department of Consumer Affairs, told Financial Express that the standards have been chalked out in consultations with manufacturers of EV scooters and will focus on the promotion of EVs in India. The adoption of EVs in India is impeded by the spate of incidents of electric two-wheelers catching fire in different circumstances, instilling fear in users. Manufacturers argue that it is a very nascent stage of EVs in India.

Of several reported incidents of fire, the brand that found itself in the spotlight is Ola. The ride-hailing company is an automotive company now, focusing only on electric vehicles. Its much-anticipated Ola S1 Pro, however, could not impress critics because of issues such as faulty batteries that led them to catch fire. Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO of Ola Electric, had defended the mishaps so far, especially at a time when the company is set to launch its first EV four-wheeler in India.

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