Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

CREEV Report Summary

Project ID: 733967

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - CREEV (Novel Compound Rotary Engine Range Extender for Electric Vehicles)

Reporting period: 2016-08-01 to 2017-07-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Road transport contributes about one-fifth of the EU's total CO2 emissions. Greater adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) would positively impact reductions in CO2 emissions, but range anxiety remains a key barrier2 to mass-uptake. When selecting a car, 44% of drivers consider emissions to be important3, but only 5% would actually buy an EV due to range concerns. Better methods for extending range are needed to allow the EV market to reach its full potential.

This project seeks to successfully demonstrate and scale up for market readiness, a novel, high efficiency, low emission, compact rotary engine range extender for electric vehicles. Electric vehicles (EV) are emerging as the future of transport as they break the dependence on fossil fuels and offer significant advantages in terms of noise and local air pollution. However, uptake has been poor so far due to range anxiety.

Automotive manufacturers have addressed this issue through the installation of range extender engines. However, existing extenders tend to be too large with poor power density, limiting their use in small commercial and domestic vehicles where space is at a premium. The clear business opportunity is to provide tier 1 automotive powertrain providers and OEMs with breakthrough innovation in EV range extender technology that significantly improves power density whilst providing high efficiency, low emissions, low noise and low vibration to meet consumer needs. Our solution, CREEV, takes the inherent advantages of rotary (Wankel) type engines for such compact applications and applies patent protected innovations to overcome efficiency and reliability issues to deliver an engine exactly matched to OEM needs.

Through application of innovative technology, CREEV delivers a step-change in range extender technology. Its features will deliver improved range to EVs, providing quiet, compact operation with lower fuel consumption and emissions compared to the existing state of the art

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

During the 1st Reporting Period of the project AIE have completed Work Package 1 “Specification/Attribute Setting”. Through the completion of this work package, AIE have quickly identified that further support will be required for the development of the vehicle power electronics, especially the specialist electronic knowledge required within the Nissan NV-200 vehicle that has been purchased for demonstrating the range expander technology that AIE have developed. The Nissan NV-200 demonstration vehicle was purchased in the early stages of this H2020 project to enable AIE’s engineering team to study and gain further understanding of the vehicle’s performance & functionality.

It is through the decision to purchase the demonstration vehicle early, AIE have gained further experience and understanding from viewing the expander technology from the perspective of an end user, with a particular regard to quantifying real driving cycles issues such as range anxiety and vehicle power consumption. It is through the viewing perspective of an end user that AIE have been able to understand and identify where the CREEV unit can be designed to resolve these issues.

As Work Package 1 has been completed during the early stages of the 1st Reporting Period , AIE have begun work on Work Packages 2, 3 and 4. The main objective of these work packages is to finalize the design of the powertrain system for benchmark testing.

During the 1st Reporting Period AIE have achieved the following key technical & commercial achievements:

• As part of Work Package 1, AIE have created the mathematical models which have resulted in AIE being able to scale up the technology for 30Kw for a vehicle demonstrator, as well as establishing through the mathematical modelling that there is potential for a further scale up of the technology to 90Kw.

• AIE have established the required specifications for the vehicle integration and established a greater understanding and knowledge of the changing emissions regulations/requirements for the electric vehicle market sector.

• AIE have developed the design of the geometries for the range extender from the mathematical modelling completed in Work Package 1.

• AIE have selected the generator and developed the vehicle integration design in Work Package 3.

• The work that has begun on Work Package 3 has resulted in the opportunity for AIE to develop a potentially lucrative commercial relationship for the ranger expander technology with a major automotive manufacturer.

• AIE have been exploring the possible use of the range extender technology in other commercial sectors, including aerospace.

• The work which AIE has started in Work Package 4 has resulted in the opportunity for the development of a mobile generator with future potential customers.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

CREEV will progress beyond the state of the art and have the following results:

• CREEV will reduce anxiety among potential electric car buyers about the range electric cars can travel with its compact and efficient, low-emission range extender. With reduced user anxiety about buying EC cars, more people will buy them and this will have a positive impact on the environment by reducing CO2 emissions.

• Inserting CREEV technology into LCVs makes them much more attractive to commercial fleets, for whom hours of recharging a car battery would prove economically unattractive. Again, this would mean a higher proportion of LCVs on the road compared to petrol and diesel cars and therefore a reduction in CO2 emissions.

• We have begun producing papers, case studies, tutorials and other publications specifically targeted at key decision-makers in the industry. This is designed to build confidence in the CREEV product.

The CREEV technology will:

• Reduce Noise Pollution – CREEV technology, rotary engines reduce overall engine noise as exhaust gases passing through the system are released cooler and as close to atmospheric pressure as possible, generating significantly less noise.

• Increase Efficiency – CREEV harnesses additional energy from exhaust emissions that would otherwise be lost. By increasing the expansion stroke of the engine through recovered unburnt fuel in exhaust gases, CREEV effectively generates more power and thermal efficiency, reducing fuel consumption and exhaust emissions all within a lighter, compact package.

• Create Cleaner Exhausts – CREEV provides a unique solution for the further development of low emission vehicles, the CREEV exhaust expander unit is specifically designed to consume unburnt exhaust products while expansion occurs, resulting in lower overall emissions for a cleaner, greener experience. This environmentally friendly solution not only reduces carbon emissions but also fuel costs by recouping exhaust energy and reducing fuel consumption.

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