The objective of the research is to design, manufacture, test on bench and on vehicle a flywheel motor/generator unit. This will demonstrate the technical feasibility, test the operational features, evaluate the advantages in terms of energy saving for electric vehicles, and enable the assessment of the economical benefits as well as the impact in terms of global energy conservation.
The solution will be developed according to the specifications that will be defined in the first part of the research. In principle these are expected to be:
rotational speed = 50.000 to 60.000 rpm
total weight of the unit = 35 kg
The objectives will be addressed (according to the work plan outlined in the following section) following a systems engineering approach based on the integration of available technological means, supported by appropriate simulations in the design phases and complemented by extensive testing on separate components and on complete flywheel units on the bench and on a vehicle.
Special care and priority will be given to the following aspects: Safety:
this aspect will be considered throughout the development process, from the calculation of rim, dimensions, containment ring with impact analysis, to dynamic analysis and bench tests, up to burst test; fatigue behaviour of components will also be taken into account.
this issue will be tackled mainly by a new design for a low loss electrical machine and power electronics, as well as with appropriate definition of magnetic bearings system.
Expected Achievements and Exploitation
The key achievements of the envisaged solution will be:
high input/output energy efficiency over the range of the flywheel operating conditions
high specific power (over 1 kW/kg referred to the complete unit), 40 kW peak power
specific energy adequate to mission requirements (over 10 Wh/kg referred to the complete unit)
low cost to make the flywheel system economically competitive over the vehicle life cycle
compatibility with the most severe vehicle operational and environmental conditions, including the safety related aspects
high compactness for optimising the energy and power density and to facilitate the vehicle integration.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts