Scania and Fraunhofer electrify semi-trailers
Volkswagen subsidiary Scania made a solar cell clad trailer to power a plug-in hybrid truck and is preparing testing in Sweden. In Germany, Fraunhofer LBF was looking at semi-trucks as well and developed a lightweight high-voltage battery system for heavy-duty EVs.
New lab test to simulate realistic battery conditions
In the MEF-BILL project, researchers at the Fraunhofer LBF are working on a new method for testing batteries under real conditions. For this purpose, the Darmstadt researchers are combining a multi-environment testing facility with a computational vehicle simulation.
BMW, GKN, Fraunhofer LBF, Fuel Cell Truck.
BMW looks into fuel cells: At the FVV research institute a new group led by BMW’s Dr. Merten Jung is working on future fuel cells designed to be cheaper. Through application-oriented research, the group sees potential in lowering platinum content, simulation models as well as new components. Hydrogen as well as air supply systems are further fields FVV research is looking into and Jung hopes “it will be possible in some ten years to build hydrogen fuel cell propulsion systems that do not contain much more platinum than a today’s diesel catalytic converter.”
More electric motors will roll off the GKN production lines GKN at Bruneck, Italy, where the supplier plans to increase capacity by 60 percent until 2019. Demand feeds the move and comes from OEMs like Volvo or BMW who use GKN’s eAxle system in their plug-in hybrids.
Smarter testing: The InTeLekt project delivers first results as Fraunhofer LBF presents a new testing environment for error simulation in power modules. It shall help to develop EVs faster and mimics both electric drive and battery to test the inverter and allows to impress vibrations at the same time.
Road legal fuel cell truck: Swiss developer ESORO received official road approval for its 35t fuel cell truck it realised for Coop. The truck has been running for thousands of testing kilometres and will now deliver chilled products to the grocer. One hydrogen filling lasts for 400 km.
EV sales in the UK and France.
With 1,006 new electric vehicles hitting the road, EV sales rose 10.7 percent in the UK in June. Moreover, 2,190 plug-in hybrids were sold on the Isles – that’s 30.5% more than last year. And 15,000 EVs have been registered in France since the beginning of the year, 2,956 in June (up 6.1%).
smmt.co.uk (UK), avere-france.org (France)
Georgia Tech, Fraunhofer LBF, FEV & RWTH Aachen, Teijin.
Breakthrough for fuel cells? Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a new fabrication technique to produce platinum-based hollow nanocages with ultra-thin walls that could significantly reduce the amount of the costly metal needed to provide catalytic activity. Use of these nanocage structures in fuel cell electrodes could increase the utilization efficiency of the platinum electrocatalyst by a factor of as much as seven.
Charging capacity is more important than range: The Fraunhofer LBF looked at the long distance capability of electric cars, finding that it is not the cars’ range, but the infrastructure’s sufficient charging capacity that will result in the vehicles being able to move about more quickly. The theory was confirmed during praxis tests as well as model calculations.
springerprofessional.de (in German)
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Pushing drivetrain development: German development service provider FEV and the Institute for Combustion Engines of the RWTH Aachen University (VKA) were able to establish a virtual connection between to separated test benches. That i.e. allows them to test different combinations of a hybrid drivetrain that are not mechanically compatible (yet) and would otherwise have to be adapted first.
CFK solar racer: Japanese Kogoakuin University is building a solar-powered car from carbon-fiber reinforced plastic with the help of Teijin’s companies Toho Tenax and GH Craft. The lightweight EV will take part in the World Solar Challenge in Australia in October.
Fraunhofer LBF, Porsche, Advanced Propulsion Centre, Falken.
German battery testing: Fraunhofer LBF has opened its centre for system reliability in electromobility, abbreviated ZSZ-e, in Darmstadt, Germany. Here, researchers will develop testing procedures and guidelines for high-voltage batteries and perform multi-physical tests on batteries, modules and components. Fraunhofer LBF also introduced its generator-electric research vehicle “GEV/one.”
New Porsche 919 Hybrid revealed: The updated Le Mans racer has received numerous improvements by Porsche, such as redefined energy recovery systems. Thus, this year the 919 will compete in the 8 MJ category (8 MJ of recovered energy per lap).Total system power is now nearly at 746 kW.
autovolt-magazine.com, greencarcongress.com, carscoops.com
Multi-million funding: In its latest funding round, the UK Advanced Propulsion Centre has awarded a total of 80 million pounds to four projects. These aim to bring fuel cell range-extenders into van fleets, develop high efficiency transmissions and create the next generation of electric and hybrid buses.
apcuk.co.uk, nextgreencar.com, renewableenergyfocus.com
Tyres for hybrid SUVs: Falken is working on a new tyre for the use on plug-in hybrid SUVs. The goal is to combine both the sporty dynamics with low rolling resistance. The concept tyres had been on display on Mitsubishi’s Concept XR-PHEV II that made its debut at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show.