Reduction in Vehicle Temperatures and Fuel Use from Cabin Ventilation, Solar-Reflective Paint, and a New Solar-Reflective Glazing
A new type of solar-reflective glass that improves reflection of the near-infrared (NIR) portion of the solar spectrum has been developed. Also developed was a prototype solar-reflective paint that increases the NIR reflection of opaque vehicle surfaces while maintaining desired colors in the visible portion of the spectrum. Both of these technologies, as well as solar-powered parked car ventilation, were tested on a Cadillac STS as part of the Improved Mobile Air Conditioning Cooperative Research Program (I-MAC). Significant reductions in interior and vehicle skin temperatures were measured. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) performed an analysis to determine the impact of reducing the thermal load on the vehicle. A simplified cabin thermal/fluid model was run to predict the potential reduction in A/C system capacity. The potential reduction in fuel use was calculated using a vehicle simulation tool developed by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).