Mobility Solutions

Bosch power electronics The command center of the electrical powertrain

  • Central interface between electric motor and battery
  • Bosch generation 2.2 and 2.3 systems for hybrid and electric cars
  • Key component of electric powertrains and recuperation systems
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  • June 17, 2013
  • Mobility Solutions
  • Press releases
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press release

Power electronics are an indispensable part of every electrical powertrain. The aluminum housing with its electronic components is often barely larger than a shoebox, yet it functions as the central interface between the electric motor and battery. The system converts the direct current stored as energy in the battery into alternating current for the electric motor. “The more efficiently the power electronics work, the greater a vehicle’s electric range,” says Dr. Joachim Fetzer, member of the executive management of the Bosch Gasoline Systems division. “Our current powertrain systems have an efficiency rating of 92 percent, which allows car owners to make the most of their batteries’ capacity.” It is no coincidence that Bosch power electronics will be installed in the extremely fuel-efficient VW XL1. Versions of the system can also be found in the VW Jetta Hybrid and e-up!. Other cars including the Fiat 500e, Porsche Panamera Hybrid, and PSA diesel hybrid make use of the technology as well.

These various examples show how versatile the Bosch power electronics system is. The latest generation 2.3 model has a pulse inverter, and is designed to work within a voltage range of 150 to 430 volts. “Our power electronics can be just as easily installed in a small, everyday hybrid as they can in a purely-electric sportscar,” Fetzer says. The components can power a motor with an output of up to 100 kW.

Along with the voltage range, the form is also variable: Bosch offers both rectangular and flat versions of the system. In addition, the 2.3 model is about a third smaller than previous generations. This enables it to be installed even where space is at a premium – for example in hybrids that have both an electric motor and an internal-combustion engine under the hood.

Pulse inverter and inverter for modern electrical powertrains
In addition to a pulse inverter, the generation 2.3 model also contains a DC-DC converter. The combination of these two elements in one system allows a particularly compact design. The pulse inverter transforms the direct current stored in the battery into alternating current for the electric motor. The reverse happens during braking: it converts the alternating current generated by recuperation into direct current. This is the only way energy released while braking can be stored in the battery.

The DC-DC converter transforms high voltage into power for the 12-volt vehicle electrical system. This system encompasses power consumers such as the radio and headlights. The DC-DC converter also supplies power from the lithium-ion battery to comfort and safety systems such as electric steering and ESP, as well as to all the control units in the vehicle electrical system. When headlights, on-board electronics, and driver assistance systems are all in use simultaneously, more than 150 amperes of current flow through the compact electronics.

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Mobility Solutions is the largest Bosch Group business sector. In 2015, its sales came to 41.7 billion euros, or 59 percent of total group sales. This makes the Bosch Group one of the leading automotive suppliers. The Mobility Solutions business sector combines the group’s expertise in three mobility domains – automation, electrification, and connectivity – and offers its customers integrated mobility solutions. Its main areas of activity are injection technology and powertrain peripherals for internal-combustion engines, diverse solutions for powertrain electrification, vehicle safety systems, driver-assistance and automated functions, technology for user-friendly infotainment as well as vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, repair-shop concepts, and technology and services for the automotive aftermarket. Bosch is synonymous with important automotive innovations, such as electronic engine management, the ESP anti-skid system, and common-rail diesel technology.

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 375,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2015). The company generated sales of 70.6 billion euros in 2015. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 440 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing and sales network covers some 150 countries. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. Bosch employs 55,800 associates in research and development at 118 locations across the globe. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to deliver innovations for a connected life. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.”

Further information is available online at and,

PI8108 - June 17, 2013

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