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Flywheel electromechanical battery for electric vehicles


JOU-0365 Objective: The storage of electric energy with flywheels has been studied for many years, in particular for applications in electric vehicles, where flywheels can be particularly useful as a power booster due to the very high power densities which can be obtained. With the present state of the art, rotation speeds of 10.000 r/min can be obtained. This leads to energy densities which are an order of magnitude smaller than for lead acid batteries. For that reason flywheels in EVs could only be used in combination with batteries which involves expensive and complicated systems. New developments in flywheel technology may lead to flywheels capable of 100.000 r/min; this would result in energy densities which are an order of magnitude larger than lead acid batteries. Such flywheels would not only be an interesting power booster but could also be used as a very interesting main storage device which does not require an additional battery. This project will assess the technical and economical feasibility of flywheel systems in various EV applications.

JOU-0365 Brief description of the project:
The study will consist of the following parts:
- Bibliography;
- Establishment of the state of the art;
- Analytical and theoretical studies of modern high energy flywheels; including material studies. For these studies the ANSYS code will be used; - System studies of a complete advanced flywheel system: including magnetic suspension, control electronics, power conditioning, motor commutation, driver, tachometer and telemetries;
- A technical and economical comparison will be made with competing systems; in particular with different types of batteries;
- Finally the market potential and economic viability will be assessed.
Distribution of tasks: FIAT CIEI( project leader): examination of applications; ANSALDO RICERCHE: bibliography, system studies, competing technologies, examine potential automotive applications; IAD: competing technologies, breakeven cost, economic feasibility; UN. SHEFFIELD: high speed electric motors, magnetic bearing systems, energy flow control system.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Corso Giulio Cesare 300
10154 Torino

Participants (2)

Corso Perrone 25
16152 Genova
United Kingdom
Mappin Street
S1 3JD Sheffield