High Performance Climate Control for Alternative Fuel Vehicle 2001-01-1719
Conventional gasoline-powered automotive heating systems use the abundant coolant waste heat to achieve acceptable comfort. Engine thermal losses in alternative fuel vehicles (ULEVs, HEVs and EVs) are too small to meet the heating load. The mobile heating and air conditioning systems in use today on internal combustion vehicles do not lend themselves to efficient application in the Low Emission Vehicle market.
A climate control system (including heating, cooling, ventilating and dehumidifying) has been developed by Groupe Énerstat inc. The Climate Control System has been designed from the ground up specifically for high efficiencies vehicles and it integrates a high performance hermetically sealed heat pump and a thermal storage unit. Energy regeneration allows for constant exchange of the cab's air and optimum air quality with efficient defogging and defrosting of windows without serious energy expenditure.
Prototypes have been tested in a climate chamber (from -30°C to +30°C) and been installed in a small delivery van converted to electricity. The van has been operated with (and without) the system for comparison purposes. The testing we have performed indicates that the Climate Control System would operate at a COP of 2.9 under severe driving conditions.
The high performance climate control system is flexible enough to be readily adaptable to the needs of different categories of vehicles, such as cars, vans and buses. The system maintains optimum comfort, air quality, humidity control and defogging/defrosting as soon as the vehicle is started, even at temperatures below -20°C which represents a distinct advantage even over conventional ICE vehicles.