Converging Technologies for Electric/Hybrid Vehicles and More Electric Aircraft Systems 2010-01-1757
The aerospace industry is facing challenges similar to those of the automotive industry in terms of improving emissions, fuel economy, and cost. Another similarity is the move toward replacing mechanical and pneumatic systems with electrical systems, thus transitioning toward “more electric” architectures. To meet these challenges in the automotive industry, significant work has been done in the areas of electric, hybrid, and fuel cell vehicles. In the case of airplanes, more electric architecture is the emerging trend. The intent is to move as many aircraft loads as possible to electrical power, resulting in simpler aircraft systems leading to the potential for lower fuel consumption, reduced emissions, reduced maintenance, and possibly lower costs. Electric-powered environment control systems (ECS), electrical actuators, electric de-icing, etc. are some examples of aircraft systems under consideration. Electric starting of the engine and the conversion of all the pneumatic and hydraulic units on the accessory gearbox (AGB) to an electric system are also being investigated. This paper examines the synergies between the electrical components for electric/hybrid vehicles and more electric aircrafts systems and how the technology of the components being developed for these systems are converging to be modular, more efficient, smaller size, lower weight, and capable of operating over a wide temperature range.