Optimization of Electric Vehicle Exterior Noise for Pedestrian Safety and Sound Quality
The automotive industry continues to develop new powertrain and vehicle technologies aimed at reducing overall vehicle-level fuel consumption. Specifically, the use of electrified propulsion systems is expected to play an increasingly important role in helping OEM’s meet fleet CO2 reduction targets for 2025 and beyond. Electric and hybrid electric vehicles do not typically utilize IC engines for low-speed operation. Under these low-speed operating conditions, the vehicles are much quieter than conventional IC engine-powered vehicles, making their approach difficult to detect by pedestrians. To mitigate this safety concern, many manufacturers have synthesized noise (using exterior speakers) to increase detection distance. Further, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has provided recommendations pursuant to the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act (PSEA) of 2010 for such exterior noise signatures to ensure detectability.