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Technical Paper

Full Hybrid Electrical Vehicle Battery Pack System Design, CFD Simulation and Testing

2010-04-12
2010-01-1080
CFD analysis was performed using the FLUENT software to design the thermal system for a hybrid vehicle battery pack. The battery pack contained multiple modular battery elements, called bricks, and the inlet and outlet bus bars that electrically connected the bricks into a series string. The simulated thermal system was comprised of the vehicle cabin, seat cavity, inlet plenum, battery pack, a downstream centrifugal fan, and the vehicle trunk. The fan was modeled using a multiple reference frame approach. A full system analysis was done for airflow and thermal performance optimization to ensure the most uniform cell temperatures under all operating conditions. The mesh for the full system was about 13 million cells run on a 6-node HP cluster. A baseline design was first analyzed for fluid-thermal performance. Subsequently, multiple design iterations were run to create uniform airflow among all the individual bricks while minimizing parasitic pressure drop.
Technical Paper

Thermal Comfort Prediction and Validation in a Realistic Vehicle Thermal Environment

2012-04-16
2012-01-0645
The focus of this study is to validate the predictive capability of a recently developed physiology based thermal comfort modeling tool in a realistic thermal environment of a vehicle passenger compartment. Human subject test data for thermal sensation and comfort was obtained in a climatic wind tunnel for a cross-over vehicle in a relatively warm thermal environment including solar load. A CFD/thermal model that simulates the vehicle operating conditions in the tunnel, is used to provide the necessary inputs required by the stand-alone thermal comfort tool. Comparison of the local and the overall thermal sensation and comfort levels between the human subject test and the tool's predictions shows a reasonably good agreement. The next step is to use this modeling technique in designing and developing energy-efficient HVAC systems without compromising thermal comfort of the vehicle occupants.
Journal Article

Energy Efficient HVAC System with Spot Cooling in an Automobile - Design and CFD Analysis

2012-04-16
2012-01-0641
Spot, or distributed, cooling and heating is an energy efficient way of delivering comfort to an occupant in the car. This paper describes an approach to distributed cooling in the vehicle. A two passenger CFD model of an SUV cabin was developed to obtain the solar and convective thermal loads on the vehicle, characterize the interior thermal environment and accurately evaluate the fluid-thermal environment around the occupants. The present paper focuses on the design and CFD analysis of the energy efficient HVAC system with spot cooling. The CFD model was validated with wind tunnel data for its overall accuracy. A baseline system with conventional HVAC air was first analyzed at mid and high ambient conditions. The airflow and cooling delivered to the driver and the passenger was calculated. Subsequently, spot cooling was analyzed in conjunction with a much lower conventional HVAC airflow.
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