An Intelligent Alternator Control Mechanism for Energy Recuperation and Fuel Efficiency Improvement 2013-01-1750
With the current state of ever rising fuel prices and unavailability of affordable alternate technologies, significant research and development efforts have been invested in recent times towards improving fuel efficiency of vehicles powered with conventional internal combustion engines. To achieve this, a varied approach has been adopted by researchers to cover the entire energy chain including fuel quality, combustion quality, power generation efficiency, down-sizing, power consumption efficiency, etc. Apart from energy generation, distribution and consumption, another domain that has been subjected to significant scrutiny is energy recuperation or recovery.
A moving vehicle and a running engine provide a number of opportunities for useful back-recovery and storage of energy. The most significant sources for recuperation are the kinetic energy of the moving vehicle or running engine and to a lesser extent the thermal energy from medium such as exhaust gas. This paper describes and analyzes a method to recuperate electrical energy from a portion of the vehicle kinetic energy through an intelligent alternator control mechanism. The intelligent alternator control system, its implementation on a demonstrator vehicle including the control logics, and measurements of recuperated energy and fuel saving under different test conditions are presented as part of this paper.