Many mobile devices depend on rechargeable batteries. A reliable operation needs a careful discharging, but also a careful charging. Otherwise the reliability of the battery may be compromized, even creating a fire. To support the user some batteries have built-in safety measures to prevent the most hazardous scenarios: deep discharge, overcharge, short circuit. This makes "smart batteries".
"Smart Batteries" prevent problems between the charger and the battery during charging by sending their specific parameters (charging current, charging voltage).
The communication uses the SMBus (System Management Bus) which is based on the I2C bus. So every smart battery can communicate with every smart charger and check out whether the charger can deliver the requested charging parameters. The bus is also available to an additional device ("host") to act as a superviser to the battery and the charger. So the mobile device itself (e.g. a measuring system) can check the status of the battery and the charger.
SMBus Smart Charger
We have developed a "smart charger" to power a mobile measuring system, based on SMBus.