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QUalifying and Implementing a user-centric designed and EfficienT electric vehicle

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - QUIET (QUalifying and Implementing a user-centric designed and EfficienT electric vehicle)

Reporting period: 2019-04-01 to 2021-03-31

QUIET aims at developing an improved and energy efficient electric vehicle with increased driving range under real world driving conditions. The technologies, used to achieve this target, shall be integrated and qualified in a Honda B-segment electric vehicle validator. The overall project target is to reduce the energy needed for cooling and heating the cabin of an electric vehicle under different driving conditions by at least 30 % compared to the Honda baseline 2017. Additionally, a weight reduction of about 20 % of vehicle components is also addressed. These efforts shall finally lead to a minimum of 25 % driving range increase under both hot (+40 °C) and cold (-10 °C) weather conditions.
A compact heat pump system was developed using the natural refrigerant R290 to ensure low Global Warming Potential and high efficiency. To save waste heat from the power electronics a thermal storage unit was developed combining paraffin ‘phase change materials’ with aluminium foam for high power output. Furthermore, novel infra-red heating panels allow thermal comfort with lower cabin temperature and therefore lower power demand. Additionally, for user input, an innovative HMI concept was implemented.
The used material mix CFRP composite, casted aluminium, aluminium foam and polycarbonate led to a total weight reduction: 26.5 kg.
Composite closures for the doors, bonnet hood and tailgate were designed and manufactured resulting in a weight saving of -24 %. Side and rear windows were changed from glass to Polycarbonate (weight saving: -35%). The seat frames were converted to aluminium-based seat frames and the seat cushions were optimized for comfort and light weight (weight saving: -17%).
All systems were combined and assembled into the fully functioning demonstrator vehicle. It then underwent rigorous testing to evaluate its performance. Under winter and summer conditions, the range was improved, successfully achieving the project target:
• cold weather +26% driving range increase,
• hot weather +2% driving range increase.
WP1 (HRE-G): The vehicle platform data acquisition of the demonstrator was the starting point of the QUIET project. The baseline system layouts and specifications, as well as the foreseen principals behind the final evaluation were identified. To find improvement potentials of the Honda Fit EV the analysis of the potential of various innovations was performed by using mathematical equations and 1D models of the overall vehicle system.
WP2 (HRE-G): A comprehensive overview of subjective and objective methods of thermal comfort assessment in vehicles was elaborated focussing on individual user needs in consideration of gender and aging society aspects. To understand the energy flows in the vehicle, a comprehensive simulation model was created for the prototype.
Each sub-system and component was modelled and parametrized based on actual measurements. The simulation model was applied in genetic algorithm-based optimisation to derive an efficient HVAC control strategy. Since the car occupants need to adapt the system to their needs, a novel HMI control concept was developed.
WP3 (ECON): The focus in WP3 is put on lightweight materials. As an added advantage, advanced lightweight materials can also have improved thermal properties. The composite closures for the doors, bonnet hood and tailgate were designed and manufactured and led to a weight saving of -24 %. The side and rear windows were changed from glass to Polycarbonate resulting in a weight save of -35%. The seat frames were converted from steel to thin-wall aluminium castings and the seat cushions were optimized for comfort and light weight and led to weight saving of -17%.
WP4 (AVL): The focus in WP4 was on detailed analysis and assessment of the baseline vehicle (Honda FIT EV) and a re-design of the vehicle thermal management system (VTMS). Extensive tests were done for the entire vehicle, the passenger compartment and single components. A compact heat pump system was developed including specifically developed components (R290 refrigerant, automotive scroll compressor, variable expansion valve, pressure relief valve).
To harness waste heat created by the electric powertrain or on-board charger a thermal storage unit was developed. Furthermore, novel infra-red heating panels were developed and implemented allowing thermal comfort with low power demand.
WP5 (HRE-G): In WP5 all systems were combined and assembled into the fully functioning QUIET demonstrator vehicle. It was evaluated on a climatic chassis dynometer to assess the impact of the technologies.
Under winter and summer conditions, the range was improved, successfully achieving the project target.
Then, the usability of the new systems and the perceived thermal comfort were evaluated by user studies.
WP6 (AIT):
Offline communication and dissemination
• QUIET logo
• Project flyers
• Decoration of demonstrator vehicle
Online communication and dissemination
• Public website
• Project video-trailer
• E-newsletter
Interactive dissemination and communication
• Organisation of 2 workshops and participation in 2 workshops
• 7 lectures and 6 exhibitions
• 16 papers published (6 conference papers, 10 scientific journal papers)
WP7 (AIT): The project management comprises organising the interaction between and within WPs as well as the administrative management of the project. Information were collected and exchanged and the necessary IT infrastructure for video or phone conferences were maintained and provided to the QUIET consortium.
WP8 (AIT): Ethics is an integral part of research from the beginning to the end and thus the highest priority in EU funded research is given to ethics. Consequently, for the QUIET project ethics requirements were set out, which the QUIET project complied with.
QUIET provided a series of breakthrough technologies that enable lowering the energy consumption for heating and cooling while reducing the weight of the entire electric vehicle validation platform, resulting in an electric driving range increased by 26 %. The impacting results are:
• Implementing an innovative air conditioning system based on the refrigerant R290 (propane), that has a significantly lower global warming potential compared to the standard refrigerant R134a.
• The heating of the vehicle can also be done by the air conditioning system working in heat pump operation mode combined with a thermal storage system.
• Infrared heating panels in the near field of the passengers enhance thermal comfort (reduced heat-up times) and reduce the energy consumption.
• The used material mix CFRP composite, casted aluminium, aluminium foam and polycarbonate led to a total weight reduction: 26.5 kg.
• A user-centric designed thermal and energy management will be developed and implemented in the Honda validator vehicle.
• Development of an HMI which is specialised on EVs and which allows the user to interact with the user-centric designed thermal- and energy management.
• This highly-successful, international and collaborative project will now be shared with OEMs and suppliers to ensure the technology can be implemented.
• Studies suggest, that market share of EV might rise above 40% by 2030.
Graphical representation of QUIET timeline and overall project development.
Driving range reduction of a medium-sized EV in cold (heating) and hot (cooling) weather conditions.
Expected reduction of energy consumption and weight in each of the three areas of the QUIET project.
Picture of the interior of the fully functioning QUIET demonstrator vehicle.
QUIET demonstrator with highlighted new installed components.
Ensemble of QUIET partner logos on car decoration.
QUIET logo on car decoration.
Selection of realized key exploitable results i.e. technological results of the QUIET project.