Volvo Cars partners with and invests in Breathe for next generation fast charging

Volvo Cars has partnered up with Breathe Battery Technologies, becoming the first car company to get access to the latest version of its patented, algorithm-enabled charging software for use on its new generation fully electric cars.

By integrating Breathe’s software in Volvo Cars in-house developed battery management platform to optimize and improve the performance of charging technology, Volvo can provide customers with even faster charging times and an enhanced overall driving and charging experience.

Volvo expects the new technology will reduce the time it takes to charge from 10 to 80% by as much as 30%—depending on the battery pack—while maintaining the same energy density and range. (Testing indicated charge time improvements ranging from 15-30%.) The charging time improvements will last across the full battery life cycle without impacting its health status.

The collaboration with Breathe is the result of a sourcing agreement for its flagship product, Breathe Charge, and represents the latest investment by the Volvo Cars Tech Fund, the company’s corporate venture capital arm.

Software-defined batteries. Unlike traditional stepped charging which relies on pre-determined rules, Breathe’s software uses adaptive charging to control the battery dynamically in real-time, resulting in significantly shorter charging times.

Using algorithms, the software manages the charging process in line with the battery’s health to deliver the best driver experience while avoiding the risk of lithium plating, which can harm the battery’s performance and lifespan.