Browse Publications Technical Papers 2018-01-0426
2018-04-03

Solar Panels on Electrified Vehicles: Applications and Off-Cycle CO 2 Credit 2018-01-0426

The objective of this article is to provide a comprehensive investigation of the opportunities and applications of using solar panels in electrified vehicles. The use of photovoltaic (PV) panels as an auxiliary energy source of on-board fuel in plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), full hybrid electric vehicles (FHEVs), and battery electric vehicles (BEVs) is investigated. The electrical architectures and the benefits of various possible applications are presented, such as active vehicle cabin ventilation, charging the low voltage battery, and charging the high voltage (HV) traction battery to extended driving ranges. In addition, the possibility of using PV panels to cool down the HV battery in extreme temperature environments is also investigated, supported by experimental tests used to properly model the thermal behavior of the HV battery and the effect of the cooling. This work also analyzes the CO2 off-cycle credits made available, by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and European Commission (EC), for automakers, which equip their vehicles with solar panels. Finally, the challenges and market outlook that make the on-board solar panel a more economical and effective solution for electrified vehicles are highlighted.

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