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Journal Article

Overcoming the Range Limitation of Medium-Duty Battery Electric Vehicles through the use of Hydrogen Fuel-Cells

Battery electric vehicles possess great potential for decreasing lifecycle costs in medium-duty applications, a market segment currently dominated by internal combustion technology. Characterized by frequent repetition of similar routes and daily return to a central depot, medium-duty vocations are well positioned to leverage the low operating costs of battery electric vehicles. Unfortunately, the range limitation of commercially available battery electric vehicles acts as a barrier to widespread adoption. This paper describes the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy and industry partners to analyze the use of small hydrogen fuel-cell stacks to extend the range of battery electric vehicles as a means of improving utility, and presumably, increasing market adoption.
Technical Paper

Determining Off-cycle Fuel Economy Benefits of 2-Layer HVAC Technology

This work presents a methodology to determine the off-cycle fuel economy benefit of a 2-Layer HVAC system which reduces ventilation and heat rejection losses of the heater core versus a vehicle using a standard system. Experimental dynamometer tests using EPA drive cycles over a broad range of ambient temperatures were conducted on a highly instrumented 2016 Lexus RX350 (3.5L, 8 speed automatic). These tests were conducted to measure differences in engine efficiency caused by changes in engine warmup due to the 2-Layer HVAC technology in use versus the technology being disabled (disabled equals fresh air-considered as the standard technology baseline). These experimental datasets were used to develop simplified response surface and lumped capacitance vehicle thermal models predictive of vehicle efficiency as a function of thermal state.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Transmission Warming Technologies at Various Ambient Conditions

This work details two approaches for evaluating transmission warming technology: experimental dynamometer testing and development of a simplified transmission efficiency model to quantify effects under varied real world ambient and driving conditions. Two vehicles were used for this investigation: a 2013 Ford Taurus and a highly instrumented 2011 Ford Fusion (Taurus and Fusion). The Taurus included a production transmission warming system and was tested over hot and cold ambient temperatures with the transmission warming system enabled and disabled. A robot driver was used to minimize driver variability and increase repeatability. Additionally the instrumented Fusion was tested cold and with the transmission pre-heated prior to completing the test cycles. These data were used to develop a simplified thermally responsive transmission model to estimate effects of transmission warming in real world conditions.
Technical Paper

Accounting for the Variation of Driver Aggression in the Simulation of Conventional and Advanced Vehicles

Hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and battery electric vehicles offer the potential to reduce both oil imports and greenhouse gases, as well as to offer a financial benefit to the driver. However, assessing these potential benefits is complicated by several factors, including the driving habits of the operator. We focus on driver aggression, i.e., the level of acceleration and velocity characteristic of travel, to (1) assess its variation within large, real-world drive datasets, (2) quantify its effect on both vehicle efficiency and economics for multiple vehicle types, (3) compare these results to those of standard drive cycles commonly used in the industry, and (4) create a representative drive cycle for future analyses where standard drive cycles are lacking.
Technical Paper

Will Your Battery Survive a World With Fast Chargers?

Fast charging is attractive to battery electric vehicle (BEV) drivers for its ability to enable long-distance travel and to quickly recharge depleted batteries on short notice. However, such aggressive charging and the sustained vehicle operation that results could lead to excessive battery temperatures and degradation. Properly assessing the consequences of fast charging requires accounting for disparate cycling, heating, and aging of individual cells in large BEV packs when subjected to realistic travel patterns, usage of fast chargers, and climates over long durations (i.e., years). The U.S. Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Office has supported the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's development of BLAST-V-the Battery Lifetime Analysis and Simulation Tool for Vehicles-to create a tool capable of accounting for all of these factors. We present on the findings of applying this tool to realistic fast charge scenarios.
Technical Paper

Measuring the Benefits of Public Chargers and Improving Infrastructure Deployments Using Advanced Simulation Tools

With support from the U.S. Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Office, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory developed BLAST-V-the Battery Lifetime Analysis and Simulation Tool for Vehicles. The addition of high-resolution spatial-temporal travel histories enables BLAST-V to investigate user-defined infrastructure rollouts of publically accessible charging infrastructure, as well as quantify impacts on vehicle and station owners in terms of improved vehicle utility and station throughput. This paper presents simulation outputs from BLAST-V that quantify the utility improvements of multiple distinct rollouts of publically available Level 2 electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) in the Seattle, Washington, metropolitan area. Publically available data on existing Level 2 EVSE are also used as an input to BLAST-V. The resulting vehicle utility is compared to a number of mock rollout scenarios.
Technical Paper

Quantifying the Effect of Fast Charger Deployments on Electric Vehicle Utility and Travel Patterns via Advanced Simulation

The disparate characteristics between conventional (CVs) and battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in terms of driving range, refill/recharge time, and availability of refuel/recharge infrastructure inherently limit the relative utility of BEVs when benchmarked against traditional driver travel patterns. However, given a high penetration of high-power public charging combined with driver tolerance for rerouting travel to facilitate charging on long-distance trips, the difference in utility between CVs and BEVs could be marginalized. We quantify the relationships between BEV utility, the deployment of fast chargers, and driver tolerance for rerouting travel and extending travel durations by simulating BEVs operated over real-world travel patterns using the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Battery Lifetime Analysis and Simulation Tool for Vehicles (BLAST-V). With support from the U.S.
Technical Paper

Evaluating the Impact of Road Grade on Simulated Commercial Vehicle Fuel Economy Using Real-World Drive Cycles

Commercial vehicle fuel economy is known to vary significantly with both positive and negative road grade. Medium- and heavy-duty vehicles operating at highway speeds require incrementally larger amounts of energy to pull heavy payloads up inclines as road grade increases. Non-hybrid vehicles are unable to recapture energy on descent and lose energy through friction braking. While the on-road effects of road grade are well understood, the majority of standard commercial vehicle drive cycles feature no road grade requirements. Additionally, the existing literature offers a limited number of sources that attempt to estimate the on-road energy implications of road grade in the medium- and heavy-duty space. This study uses real-world commercial vehicle drive cycles from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Fleet DNA database to simulate the effects of road grade on fuel economy across a range of vocations, operating conditions, and locations.
Technical Paper

Comparison of Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle Battery Life Across Geographies and Drive Cycles

In a laboratory environment, it is cost prohibitive to run automotive battery aging experiments across a wide range of possible ambient environment, drive cycle, and charging scenarios. Because worst-case scenarios drive the conservative sizing of electric-drive vehicle batteries, it is useful to understand how and why those scenarios arise and what design or control actions might be taken to mitigate them. In an effort to explore this problem, this paper applies a semi-empirical life model of the graphite/nickel-cobalt-aluminum lithium-ion chemistry to investigate calendar degradation for various geographic environments and simplified cycling scenarios. The life model is then applied to analyze complex cycling conditions using battery charge/discharge profiles generated from simulations of plug-in electric hybrid vehicles (PHEV10 and PHEV40) vehicles across 782 single-day driving cycles taken from a Texas travel survey.
Journal Article

On-Road Validation of a Simplified Model for Estimating Real-World Fuel Economy

On-road fuel economy is known to vary significantly between individual trips in real-world driving conditions. This work introduces a methodology for rapidly simulating a specific vehicle’s fuel economy over the wide range of real-world conditions experienced across the country. On-road test data collected using a highly instrumented vehicle is used to refine and validate this modeling approach. Model accuracy relative to on-road data collection is relevant to the estimation of “off-cycle credits” that compensate for real-world fuel economy benefits that are not observed during certification testing on a chassis dynamometer.
Journal Article

Simulated Real-World Energy Impacts of a Thermally Sensitive Powertrain Considering Viscous Losses and Enrichment

It is widely understood that cold ambient temperatures increase vehicle fuel consumption due to heat transfer losses, increased friction (increased viscosity lubricants), and enrichment strategies (accelerated catalyst heating). However, relatively little effort has been dedicated to thoroughly quantifying these impacts across a large set of real world drive cycle data and ambient conditions. This work leverages experimental dynamometer vehicle data collected under various drive cycles and ambient conditions to develop a simplified modeling framework for quantifying thermal effects on vehicle energy consumption. These models are applied over a wide array of real-world usage profiles and typical meteorological data to develop estimates of in-use fuel economy. The paper concludes with a discussion of how this integrated testing/modeling approach may be applied to quantify real-world, off-cycle fuel economy benefits of various technologies.
Journal Article

A Second Life for Electric Vehicle Batteries: Answering Questions on Battery Degradation and Value

Battery second use-putting used plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) batteries into secondary service following their automotive tenure-has been proposed as a means to decrease the cost of PEVs while providing low cost energy storage to other fields (e.g., electric utility markets). To understand the value of used automotive batteries, however, we must first answer several key questions related to battery degradation, including: How long will PEV batteries last in automotive service? How healthy will PEV batteries be when they leave automotive service? How long will retired PEV batteries last in second-use service? How well can we best predict the second-use lifetime of a used automotive battery? Under the support of the U.S. Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Office, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory has developed a methodology and the requisite tools to answer these questions, including the Battery Lifetime Simulation Tool (BLAST).