Robot-Based Fast Charging of Electric Vehicles 2019-01-0869
Automated, conductive charging systems enable both, the transmission of high charging power for long electric driving distances as well as comfortable and safe charging processes. Especially by the use of heavy and unhandy cables for fast charging, these systems offer user friendly vehicle charging - in particularly in combination with autonomously driving and parking vehicles. This paper deals with the definition of requirements for automated conductive charging stations with standard charging connectors and vehicle inlets and the development of a fully-automated charging robot for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.
In cooperation with the project partners BMW AG, MAGNA Steyr Engineering, KEBA AG and the Institute of Automotive Engineering at Graz University of Technology, the development and implementation of the prototype took place in the course of a governmental funded research project titled “Comfortable Mobility by Technology Integration (KoMoT)”. The charging system basic design and experiments on sensor technologies were carried out as part of contract research commissioned by the Austrian Society of Automotive Engineers (ÖVK).
In the present approach, the entire docking and undocking process of the charging connector is performed completely autonomously by a robotic arm. As an essential aim of the research activities, one novelty of the work includes the design of the sensor technology and the robot system control, enabling charging of different vehicle types in different positions, while no adaptations on the vehicles itself are necessary. Therefore, high demands on the procedure for the development of this complex mechatronic system need to be taken into account.
Short charging times and convenient charging processes are essential for the successful introduction of e-mobility. In initial work, the state-of the-art of automated conductive charging systems has been analyzed and requirements on automated charging systems are elaborated. In the subsequent section of the work, the development process of an autonomous conductive charging system is introduced and the functionality of the prototype is presented. Furthermore, the results of the prototype tests and experiments are introduced and discussed.