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Technical Paper

Estimation of Vehicle Tire-Road Contact Forces: A Comparison between Artificial Neural Network and Observed Theory Approaches

2018-04-03
2018-01-0562
One of the principal goals of modern vehicle control systems is to ensure passenger safety during dangerous maneuvers. Their effectiveness relies on providing appropriate parameter inputs. Tire-road contact forces are among the most important because they provide helpful information that could be used to mitigate vehicle instabilities. Unfortunately, measuring these forces requires expensive instrumentation and is not suitable for commercial vehicles. Thus, accurately estimating them is a crucial task. In this work, two estimation approaches are compared, an observer method and a neural network learning technique. Both predict the lateral and longitudinal tire-road contact forces. The observer approach takes into account system nonlinearities and estimates the stochastic states by using an extended Kalman filter technique to perform data fusion based on the popular bicycle model.
Technical Paper

Simulation and Bench Testing of a GM 5.3L V8 Engine

2017-03-28
2017-01-1259
The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team of Virginia Tech (HEVT) is currently modeling and bench testing powertrain components for a parallel plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV). The custom powertrain is being implemented in a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro for the EcoCAR 3 competition. The engine, a General Motors (GM) L83 5.3L V8 with Active Fuel Management (AFM) from a 2014 Silverado, is of particular importance for vehicle integration and functionality. The engine is one of two torque producing components in the powertrain. AFM allows the engine to deactivate four of the eight cylinders which is essential to meet competition goals to reduce petroleum energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. In-vehicle testing is performed with a 2014 Silverado on a closed course to understand the criteria to activate AFM. Parameters required for AFM activation are monitored by recording vehicle CAN bus traffic.
Technical Paper

Advanced Castings Made Possible Through Additive Manufacturing

2017-03-28
2017-01-1663
Binder jetting of sand molds and cores for metal casting provides a scalable and efficient means of producing metal components with complex geometric features made possible only by Additive Manufacturing. Topology optimization software that can mathematically determine the optimum placement of material for a given set of design requirements has been available for quite some time. However, the optimized designs are often not manufacturable using standard metal casting processes due to undercuts, backdraft and other issues. With the advent of binder-based 3D printing technology, sand molds and cores can be produced to make these optimized designs as metal castings.
Journal Article

The Development of Terrain Pre-filtering Technique Based on Constraint Mode Tire Model

2015-09-01
2015-01-9113
The vertical force generated from terrain-tire interaction has long been of interest for vehicle dynamic simulations and chassis development. To improve simulation efficiency while still providing reliable load prediction, a terrain pre-filtering technique using a constraint mode tire model is developed. The wheel is assumed to convey one quarter of the vehicle load constantly. At each location along the tire's path, the wheel center height is adjusted until the spindle load reaches the pre-designated load. The resultant vertical trajectory of the wheel center can be used as an equivalent terrain profile input to a simplified tire model. During iterative simulations, the filtered terrain profile, coupled with a simple point follower tire model is used to predict the spindle force. The same vehicle dynamic simulation system coupled with constraint mode tire model is built to generate reference forces.
Journal Article

A New Semi-Empirical Method for Estimating Tire Combined Slip Forces and Moments during Handling Maneuvers

2015-07-01
2015-01-9112
Modeling the tire forces and moments (F&M) generation, during combined slip maneuvers, which involves cornering and braking/driving at the same time, is essential for the predictive vehicle performance analysis. In this study, a new semi-empirical method is introduced to estimate the tire combined slip F&M characteristics based on flat belt testing machine measurement data. This model is intended to be used in the virtual tire design optimization process. Therefore, it should include high accuracy, ease of parameterization, and fast computational time. Regression is used to convert measured F&M into pure slip multi-dimensional interpolant functions modified by weighting functions. Accurate combined slip F&M predictions are created by modifying pure slip F&M with empirically determined shape functions. Transient effects are reproduced using standard relaxation length equations. The model calculates F&M at the center of the contact patch.
Technical Paper

Using Surface Texture Parameters to Relate Flat Belt Laboratory Traction Data to the Road

2015-04-14
2015-01-1513
Indoor laboratory tire testing on flat belt machines and tire testing on the actual road yield different results. Testing on the machine offers the advantage of repeatability of test conditions, control of the environmental condition, and performance evaluation at extreme conditions. However, certain aspects of the road cannot be reproduced in the laboratory. It is thus essential to understand the connection between the machine and the road, as tires spend all their life on the road. This research, investigates the reasons for differences in tire performance on the test machine and the road. The first part of the paper presents a review on the differences between tire testing in the lab and on the road, and existing methods to account for differences in test surfaces.
Technical Paper

Performance Measurement of Vehicle Antilock Braking Systems (ABS)

2015-04-14
2015-01-0591
Outdoor objective evaluations form an important part of both tire and vehicle design process since they validate the design parameters through actual tests and can provide insight into the functional performances associated with the vehicle. Even with the industry focused towards developing simulation models, their need cannot be completely eliminated as they form the basis for approving the performance predictions of any newly developed model. An objective test was conducted to measure the ABS performance as part of validation of a tire simulation design tool. A sample vehicle and a set of tires were used to perform the tests- on a road with known profile. These specific vehicle and tire sets were selected due to the availability of the vehicle parameters, tire parameters and the ABS control logic. A test matrix was generated based on the validation requirements.
Technical Paper

Development & Integration of a Charge Sustaining Control Strategy for a Series-Parallel Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle

2014-10-13
2014-01-2905
The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team of Virginia Tech (HEVT) is participating in the 2012-2014 EcoCAR 2: Plugging in to the Future Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition series organized by Argonne National Lab (ANL), and sponsored by General Motors Corporation (GM) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The goals of the competition are to reduce well-to-wheel (WTW) petroleum energy consumption (PEU), WTW greenhouse gas (GHG) and criteria emissions while maintaining vehicle performance, consumer acceptability and safety. Following the EcoCAR 2 Vehicle Development Process (VDP), HEVT is designing, building, and refining an advanced technology vehicle over the course of the three year competition using a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu donated by GM as a base vehicle.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Refinement and Testing of a Series-Parallel Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle

2014-10-13
2014-01-2904
The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team (HEVT) of Virginia Tech is ready to compete in the Year 3 Final Competition for EcoCAR 2: Plugging into the Future. The team is confident in the reliability of their vehicle, and expects to finish among the top schools at Final Competition. During Year 3, the team refined the vehicle while following the EcoCAR 2 Vehicle Development Process (VDP). Many refinements came about in Year 3 such as the implementation of a new rear subframe, the safety analysis of the high voltage (HV) bus, and the integration of Charge Sustaining (CS) control code. HEVT's vehicle architecture is an E85 Series-Parallel Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV), which has many strengths and weaknesses. The primary strength is the pure EV mode and Series mode, which extend the range of the vehicle and reduce Petroleum Energy Usage (PEU) and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions.
Journal Article

Tire Traction of Commercial Vehicles on Icy Roads

2014-09-30
2014-01-2292
Safety and minimal transit time are vital during transportation of essential commodities and passengers, especially in winter conditions. Icy roads are the worst driving conditions with the least available friction, leaving valuable cargo and precious human lives at stake. The study investigates the available friction at the tire-ice interface due to changes in key operational parameters. Experimental analysis of tractive performance of tires on ice was carried out indoor, using the terramechanics rig located at the Advanced Vehicle Dynamics Laboratory (AVDL) at Virginia Tech. The friction-slip ratio curves obtained from indoor testing were inputted into TruckSIM, defining tire behavior for various ice scenarios and then simulating performance of trucks on ice. The shortcomings of simulations in considering the effects of all the operational parameters result in differences between findings of indoor testing and truck performance simulations.
Journal Article

Finite Element Modeling of Tire Transient Characteristics in Dynamic Maneuvers

2014-04-01
2014-01-0858
Studying the kinetic and kinematics of the rim-tire combination is very important in full vehicle simulations, as well as for the tire design process. Tire maneuvers are either quasi-static, such as steady-state rolling, or dynamic, such as traction and braking. The rolling of the tire over obstacles and potholes and, more generally, over uneven roads are other examples of tire dynamic maneuvers. In the latter case, tire dynamic models are used for durability assessment of the vehicle chassis, and should be studied using high fidelity simulation models. In this study, a three-dimensional finite element model (FEM) has been developed using the commercial software package ABAQUS. The purpose of this study is to investigate the tire dynamic behavior in multiple case studies in which the transient characteristics are highly involved.
Journal Article

Robust Semi-Active Ride Control under Stochastic Excitation

2014-04-01
2014-01-0145
Ride control of military vehicles is challenging due to varied terrain and mission requirements such as operating weight. Achieving top speeds on rough terrain is typically considered a key performance parameter, which is always constrained by ride discomfort. Many military vehicles using passive suspensions suffer with compromised performance due to single tuning solution. To further stretch the performance domain to achieving higher speeds on rough roads, semi-active suspensions may offer a wide range of damping possibilities under varying conditions. In this paper, various semi-active control strategies are examined, and improvements have been made, particularly, to the acceleration-driven damper (ADD) strategy to make the approach more robust for varying operating conditions. A seven degrees of freedom ride model and a quarter-car model were developed that were excited by a random road process input modeled using an auto-regressive time series model.
Technical Paper

Powertrain Design to Meet Performance and Energy Consumption Goals for EcoCAR 3

2014-04-01
2014-01-1915
The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team (HEVT) of Virginia Tech is excited about the opportunity to apply for participation in the next Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition. EcoCAR 3 is a new four year competition sponsored by the Department of Energy and General Motors with the intention of promoting sustainable energy in the automotive sector. The goal of the competition is to guide students from universities in North America to create new and innovative technologies to reduce the environmental impact of modern day transportation. EcoCAR 3, like its predecessors, will give students hands-on experience in designing and implementing advanced technologies in a setting similar to that of current production vehicles.
Journal Article

Impact of Intelligent Transportation Systems on Vehicle Fuel Consumption and Emission Modeling: An Overview

2014-01-15
2013-01-9094
Climate change due to greenhouse gas emissions has led to new vehicle emissions standards which in turn have led to a call for vehicle technologies to meet these standards. Modeling of vehicle fuel consumption and emissions emerged as an effective tool to help in developing and assessing such technologies, to help in predicting aggregate vehicle fuel consumption and emissions, and to complement traffic simulation models. The paper identifies the current state of the art on vehicle fuel consumption and emissions modeling and its utilization to test the environmental impact of the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)’ measures and to evaluate transportation network improvements. The study presents the relevant models to ITS in the key classifications of models in this research area. It demonstrates that the trends of vehicle fuel consumption and emissions provided by current models generally do satisfactorily replicate field data trends.
Technical Paper

Model-Based Design of a Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle Control Strategy

2013-04-08
2013-01-1753
The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team (HEVT) of Virginia Tech is participating in the 2011-2014 EcoCAR 2 competition in which the team is tasked with re-engineering the powertrain of a GM donated vehicle. The primary goals of the competition are to reduce well to wheels (WTW) petroleum energy use (PEU) and reduce WTW greenhouse gas (GHG) and criteria emissions while maintaining performance, safety, and consumer acceptability. To meet these goals HEVT has designed a series parallel plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) with multiple modes of operation. This paper will first cover development of the control system architecture with a dual CAN bus structure to meet the requirements of the vehicle architecture. Next an online optimization control strategy to minimize fuel consumption will be developed. A simple vehicle plant model will then be used for software-in-the-loop (SIL) testing to improve fuel economy.
Technical Paper

Key Outcomes of Year One of EcoCAR 2: Plugging in to the Future

2013-04-08
2013-01-0554
EcoCAR 2: Plugging In to the Future (EcoCAR) is North America's premier collegiate automotive engineering competition, challenging students with systems-level advanced powertrain design and integration. The three-year Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (AVTC) series is organized by Argonne National Laboratory, headline sponsored by the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) and General Motors (GM), and sponsored by more than 28 industry and government leaders. Fifteen university teams from across North America are challenged to reduce the environmental impact of a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu by redesigning the vehicle powertrain without compromising performance, safety, or consumer acceptability. During the three-year program, EcoCAR teams follow a real-world Vehicle Development Process (VDP) modeled after GM's own VDP. The VDP serves as a roadmap for the engineering process of designing, building and refining advanced technology vehicles.
Technical Paper

Developing a Compact Continuous-State Markov Chain for Terrain Road Profiles

2013-04-08
2013-01-0629
Accurate terrain models provide the chassis designer with a powerful tool to make informed design decisions early in the design process. It is beneficial to characterize the terrain as a stochastic process, allowing limitless amounts of synthetic terrain to be created from a small number of parameters. A continuous-state Markov chain is proposed as an alternative to the traditional discrete-state chain currently used in terrain modeling practice. For discrete-state chains, the profile transitions are quantized then characterized by a transition matrix (with many values). In contrast, the transition function of a continuous-state chain represents the probability density of transitioning between any two states in the continuum of terrain heights. The transition function developed in this work uses a location-scale distribution with polynomials modeling the parameters as functions of the current state.
Journal Article

Control Strategy for the Excitation of a Complete Vehicle Test Rig with Terrain Constraints

2013-04-08
2013-01-0671
A unique concept for a multi-body test rig enabling the simulation of longitudinal, steering and vertical dynamics was developed at the Institute for Mechatronic Systems (IMS) at TU Darmstadt. A prototype of this IMS test rig is currently being built. In conjunction with the IMS test rig, the Vehicle Terrain Performance Laboratory (VTPL) at Virginia Tech further developed a full car, seven degree of freedom (7 DOF) simulation model capable of accurately reproducing measured displacement, pitch, and roll of the vehicle body due to terrain excitation. The results of the 7 DOF car model were used as the reference input to the multi-body IMS test rig model. The goal of the IMS/VTPL joint effort was to determine whether or not a controller for the IMS test rig vertical actuator could accurately reproduce wheel displacements due to different measured terrain constraints.
Journal Article

Using Performance Margin and Dynamic Simulation for Location Aware Adaptation of Vehicle Dynamics

2013-04-08
2013-01-0703
One seminal question that faces a vehicle's driver (either human or computer) is predicting the capability of the vehicle as it encounters upcoming terrain. A Performance Margin (PM) is defined in this work as the ratio of the required tractive effort to the available tractive effort for the front and rear respectively. This simple definition stems from and incorporates many traditional handling metrics and is robust in its scope of applicability. The PM is implemented in an Intervention Strategy demonstrating its use to avoid situations in which the vehicle exceeds its handling capabilities. Results from a design case study are presented to show the potential efficacy of developing a PM-based control system.
Journal Article

Enhancement of Collision Mitigation Braking System Performance Through Real-Time Estimation of Tire-road Friction Coefficient by Means of Smart Tires

2012-09-24
2012-01-2014
In the case of modern day vehicle control systems employing a feedback control structure, a real-time estimate of the tire-road contact parameters is invaluable for enhancing the performance of the chassis control systems such as anti-lock braking systems (ABS) and electronic stability control (ESC) systems. However, at present, the commercially available tire monitoring systems are not equipped to sense and transmit high speed dynamic variables used for real-time active safety control systems. Consequently, under the circumstances of sudden changes to the road conditions, the driver's ability to maintain control of the vehicle maybe at risk. In many cases, this requires intervention from the chassis control systems onboard the vehicle. Although these systems perform well in a variety of situations, their performance can be improved if a real-time estimate of the tire-road friction coefficient is available.
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