In 1999, Bravo Zulu International Ltd., (BZI) entered into the Flight Simulation Market by designing a full motion based, helicopter flight simulator. The Helitrainer was unique in the world of flight simulation because it has a full motion base with continuous rotation in either a clockwise or counterclockwise rotation. This was a tremendous advantage in flight simulation because it was the first time you could actually simulate with motion, the effects of a complete tail rotor system failure in a helicopter or a flat spin in a fixed wing aircraft. The hydraulic motion based system invented and manufactured by BZI, was controlled very precisely by the use of Pulse Width Modulation (PWM).
Thus, BZI engineers became masters of PWM in order to provide accurate resolution of the motion-based hydraulics, when referenced to the flight simulation software and visuals. This expertise was used to develop the BattRecon Pulse Width Modulated Battery De-Sulfating system.
In late 2002, BZI entered into a contract with Pakistan Air Force, the fifth largest Air Force in the world, to design and develop flight simulators for their Air Force Academy. In 2004, BZI was awarded a multi-million dollar contract to design and develop 13 different types of flight simulators.
Also in 2004, BZI began work on a large helicopter simulator project in Cairo, Egypt, the MI-17 Simulator Project. BZI began with a wrecked Russian MI-17 Helicopter hull, completely re-wired the aircraft instrument panel and integrated complex software and computerized systems to the flight controls. BZI designed and implemented a multi-projector display to project visual scenery in front of the pilots of the helicopter, while contained in the simulator theater enclosure. Once the projection system was finished, BZI fabricated a large theater enclosure to house the entire simulator and encapsulate the large forward projection screen in total darkness. The advent of the BZI/EAF MI-17 Helicopter Flight Simulator enabled the Egyptian Air Force to train their helicopter pilots without actually using expensive aircraft flight time.
In 2005, BZI began research and development on a project to determine if Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) could be utilized to remove or dissolve lead sulfate crystals from the internal plates of a lead acid battery. After conducting thousands of tests on various sizes of batteries, we discovered the optimal manner to de-sulfate a lead acid battery.
We recognized that the basic battery operation requires a daily sulfation chemical reaction we refer to as “Level 1” sulfation. This “good” sulfation is the basic operating feature of a battery, without it the battery will not store and discharge electricity. Daily sulfation that is not re-ionized into solution by the battery charger is referred to as Level 2 sulfation, or as “excess daily sulfation.”
As Level 2 sulfation continues to accumulate on the battery’s internal plates, the measureable plate resistance increases. With this increase comes a proportional loss of conductivity, or battery runtime capacity. Eventually Level 2 sulfation molecules join with adjacent Level 2 molecules and form a Level 3 crystalline form of sulfation. Ideally, the battery should be returned to a Level 1 sulfation status during each re-charging process of the battery.
Battery chargers do not have the capability to fully re-ionize Level 2 sulfation back into solution on a daily basis. They rely on a weekly “Equalization Charge” to try and compensate for the lack of sulfation elimination during the normal charging process. Even when an equalization charge is applied, the battery is still left with remaining sulfation accumulation. After hundreds of field tests and comparisons, in all cases the BattRecon system was able to improve the battery’s performance even after a battery was equalize charged.
In 2008, BZI engineers ultimately developed a system, the Model 4800, creating a market for commercial battery de-sulfation. BZI began building and selling the Model 4800 to the commercial market in mid 2009. We continue to build the 4800 series, the latest version is now identified as the Model 4800F/CX.
In 2010 - 2011, BZI research and development teams worked on a new system to precisely measure battery and battery cell impedance in real time. This development created a new way to monitor and automate battery service, which we named, the Zulu One, SCAN – COMMAND and CONTROL system. We discovered a difficulty in measuring impedance conducted over several feet of wiring, so it was determined that a new process had to be developed to measure battery impedance in real time.
In 2012, we changed the design of the BattRecon PWM system to allow the automation of commercial battery de-sulfation. Automation allowed us to develop a daily, weekly or other periodic application of the BattRecon process, which we refer to as, “Battery Optimization.” The benefit of Automated Battery Optimization to the battery operator is, 1) a reduction in service labor and costs, 2) a reduction of the charging electrical consumption, and 3) the extension of the battery’s life expectancy.
Automated Battery Optimization allows the BattRecon system to be applied for a brief time after each charge, or delayed for several charge cycles at the owner’s discretion. This brief 1 to 5 minute daily or weekly application, removes all possible Level 2 sulfation buildup and restores the battery to Level 1, optimum performance. Automation required the capability of the PWM system to be controlled by a computer and software, therefore, a new PWM process had to be developed.
In 2013 this new Patent Pending PWM control system was named the Eco-Pulse, because it dramatically reduced the amount of electrical energy required to de-sulfate the battery. The Eco-Pulse system is our next generation of battery de-sulfating processes, setting a new world standard for battery restoration efficiency, low cost and the reduction of service labor.
Eco-Pulse creates and applies an individually controlled, variable amplitude pulse current to a battery. Eco-Pulse then measures the affect of those individual pulses upon the battery. Once the affect of the previous pulse is compared to the desired effect, Eco-Pulse will then adjust the subsequent pulse(s) always striving for the desired battery affect. This rapid and exacting pulse adjustment process continues until the battery is fully optimized, which in most normally sulfated batteries is about 5 minutes.
In 2014, with the successful computerization of the Eco-Pulse system, we were able to develop a sophisticated software management system to monitor and control the BattRecon machines anywhere in the world. Using an internet connection and a WIFI capable computer, the BattRecon Model 5000 and 6000 series of devices are now completely capable of remote viewing and control by the operator, or they can simply operate with pre-programmed instructions as a stand-alone device. Recent developments to operate the system using a telemetry based communication channel, over the worldwide cell tower network, are being released in early 2015.
Today the world has a new and powerful tool to significantly change the way industrial batteries are maintained and operated. The advent of the Eco-Pulse Battery Automated Optimization System, will dramatically improve battery performance, lower operational cost and conserve considerable energy.