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Technical Paper

A Modified Monte-Carlo Approach to Simulation-Based Vehicle Parameter Design with Multiple Performance Objectives and Multiple Scenarios

2002-03-04
2002-01-1186
Shorter development times in the automotive industry are leading to the increased use of computer simulation in the vehicle design cycle to pre-optimize vehicle concepts. The focus of the work presented in this study is vehicle dynamic performance in different driving maneuvers. More specifically this paper presents a methodology for simulation-based parameter design of vehicles for excellent performance in multiple maneuvers. The model used in the study consists of eight degrees-of-freedom and has been validated previously. The vehicle data used is for a commercially available vehicle. A number of different driving scenarios (maneuvers) based on ISO standards for transient dynamic behavior are implemented and performance indices are calculated for each individual maneuver considered. Vehicle performance is assessed based on the performance indices.
Technical Paper

Development of New Turbulence Models and Computational Methods for Automotive Aerodynamics and Heat Transfer

2008-12-02
2008-01-2999
This paper is a review of turbulence models and computational methods that have been produced at Clemson University's Advanced Computational Research Laboratory. The goal of the turbulence model development has been to create physics-based models that are economically feasible and can be used in a competitive environment, where turnaround time is a critical factor. Given this goal, all of the work has been focused on Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations in the eddy-viscosity framework with the majority of the turbulence models having three transport equations in addition to mass, momentum, and energy. Several areas have been targeted for improvement in turbulence modeling for complex flows such as those found in motorsports aerodynamics: the effects of streamline curvature and rotation on the turbulence field, laminar-turbulent transition, and separated shear layer rollup and breakdown.
Technical Paper

Conceptualization and Implementation of a Scalable Powertrain, Modular Energy Storage and an Alternative Cooling System on a Student Concept Vehicle

2018-04-03
2018-01-1185
The Deep Orange program immerses automotive engineering students into the world of an OEM as part of their 2-year graduate education. In support of developing the program’s seventh vehicle concept, the students studied the sponsoring brand essence, conducted market research, and made a heuristic assessment of competitor vehicles. The upfront research lead to the definition of target customers and setting vehicle level targets that were broken down into requirements to develop various vehicle sub-systems. The powertrain team was challenged to develop a scalable propulsion concept enabled by a common vehicle architecture that allowed future customers to select (at the point of purchase) among various levels of electrification best suiting their needs and personal desires. Four different configurations were identified and developed: all-electric, two plug-in hybrid electric configurations, and an internal combustion engine only.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of CarFit® Criteria Compliance and Knowledge of Seat Adjustment

2018-04-03
2018-01-1314
Improper fit in a vehicle will affect a driver’s ability to reach the steering wheel and pedals, view the roadway and instrument gauges, and allow vehicle safety features to protect the driver during a crash. CarFit® is a community outreach program to educate older drivers on proper “fit” within their personal vehicle. A subset of measurements from CarFit® were used to quantify the “fit” of 97 older drivers over 60 and 20 younger drivers, ages 30-39, in their personal vehicles. Binary, logistic regression was used to assess the likelihood of drivers meeting the CarFit® measurement criteria prior to and after CarFit® education. The results showed older drivers were five times more likely than younger drivers to meet the CarFit® criteria for line of sight above the steering wheel, suggesting that younger drivers would also benefit from CarFit® education.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Human Actions in Assembly Process by a Spatial-Temporal End-to-End Learning Model

2019-04-02
2019-01-0509
It’s important to predict human actions in the industry assembly process. Foreseeing future actions before they happened is an essential part for flexible human-robot collaboration and crucial to safety issues. Vision-based human action prediction from videos provides intuitive and adequate knowledge for many complex applications. This problem can be interpreted as deducing the next action of people from a short video clip. The history information needs to be considered to learn these relations among time steps for predicting the future steps. However, it is difficult to extract the history information and use it to infer the future situation with traditional methods. In this scenario, a model is needed to handle the spatial and temporal details stored in the past human motions and construct the future action based on limited accessible human demonstrations.
Technical Paper

Modeling and Learning of Object Placing Tasks from Human Demonstrations in Smart Manufacturing

2019-04-02
2019-01-0700
In this paper, we present a framework for the robot to learn how to place objects to a workpiece by learning from humans in smart manufacturing. In the proposed framework, the rational scene dictionary (RSD) corresponding to the keyframes of task (KFT) are used to identify the general object-action-location relationships. The Generalized Voronoi Diagrams (GVD) based contour is used to determine the relative position and orientation between the object and the corresponding workpiece at the final state. In the learning phase, we keep tracking the image segments in the human demonstration. For the moment when a spatial relation of some segments are changed in a discontinuous way, the state changes are recorded by the RSD. KFT is abstracted after traversing and searching in RSD, while the relative position and orientation of the object and the corresponding mount are presented by GVD-based contours for the keyframes.
Technical Paper

An Immersive Vehicle-in-the-Loop VR Platform for Evaluating Human-to-Autonomous Vehicle Interactions

2019-04-02
2019-01-0143
The deployment of autonomous vehicles in real-world scenarios requires thorough testing to ensure sufficient safety levels. Driving simulators have proven to be useful testbeds for assisted and autonomous driving functionalities but may fail to capture all the nuances of real-world conditions. In this paper, we present a snapshot of the design and evaluation using a Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control application of virtual reality platform currently in development at our institution. The platform is designed so to: allow for incorporating live real-world driving data into the simulation, enabling Vehicle-in-the-Loop testing of autonomous driving behaviors and providing us with a useful mean to evaluate the human factor in the autonomous vehicle context.
Technical Paper

A Heuristic Supervisory Controller for a 48V Hybrid Electric Vehicle Considering Fuel Economy and Battery Aging

2019-01-15
2019-01-0079
Most studies on supervisory controllers of hybrid electric vehicles consider only fuel economy in the objective function. Taking into consideration the importance of the energy storage system health and its impact on the vehicle’s functionality, cost, and warranty, recent studies have included battery degradation as the second objective function by proposing different energy management strategies and battery life estimation methods. In this paper, a rule-based supervisory controller is proposed that splits the torque demand based not only on fuel consumption, but also on the battery capacity fade using the concept of severity factor. For this aim, the severity factor is calculated at each time step of a driving cycle using a look-up table with three different inputs including c-rate, working temperature, and state of charge of the battery. The capacity loss of the battery is then calculated using a semi-empirical capacity fade model.
Technical Paper

Real-Time Reinforcement Learning Optimized Energy Management for a 48V Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicle

2019-04-02
2019-01-1208
Energy management of hybrid vehicle has been a widely researched area. Strategies like dynamic programming (DP), equivalent consumption minimization strategy (ECMS), Pontryagin’s minimum principle (PMP) are well analyzed in literatures. However, the adaptive optimization work is still lacking, especially for reinforcement learning (RL). In this paper, Q-learning, as one of the model-free reinforcement learning method, is implemented in a mid-size 48V mild parallel hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) framework to optimize the fuel economy. Different from other RL work in HEV, this paper only considers vehicle speed and vehicle torque demand as the Q-learning states. SOC is not included for the reduction of state dimension. This paper focuses on showing that the EMS with non-SOC state vectors are capable of controlling the vehicle and outputting satisfactory results. Electric motor torque demand is chosen as action.
Technical Paper

Detection of Presence and Posture of Vehicle Occupants Using a Capacitance Sensing Mat

2019-04-02
2019-01-1232
Capacitance sensing is the technology that detects the presence of nearby objects by measuring the change in capacitance. A change in capacitance is triggered either by a change in dielectric constant, area of overlap or distance of separation between the electrodes of the capacitor. It is a technology that finds wide use in applications such as touch screens, proximity sensing etc. Drawing motivation from such applications, this paper investigates how capacitive sensing can be employed to detect the presence and posture of occupants inside vehicles. Compared to existing solutions, the proposed approach is low-cost, easy to deploy and highly efficient. The sensing system consists of a capacitance-sensing mat that is embedded with copper foils and an associated sensing circuitry. Inside the mat the foils are arranged in rows and columns to form several touch-nodes across the surface of the mat.
Technical Paper

Use of Cellphones as Alternative Driver Inputs in Passenger Vehicles

2019-04-02
2019-01-1239
Automotive drive-by-wire systems have enabled greater mobility options for individuals with physical disabilities. To further expand the driving paradigm, a need exists to consider an alternative vehicle steering mechanism to meet specific needs and constraints. In this study, a cellphone steering controller was investigated using a fixed-base driving simulator. The cellphone incorporated the direction control of the vehicle through roll motion, as well as the brake and throttle functionality through pitch motion, a design that can assist disabled drivers by excluding extensive arm and leg movements. Human test subjects evaluated the cellphone with conventional vehicle control strategy through a series of roadway maneuvers. Specifically, two distinctive driving situations were studied: a) obstacle avoidance test, and b) city road traveling test. A conventional steering wheel with self-centering force feedback tuning was used for all the driving events for comparison.
Technical Paper

Handling Deviation for Autonomous Vehicles after Learning from Small Dataset

2018-04-03
2018-01-1091
Learning only from a small set of examples remains a huge challenge in machine learning. Despite recent breakthroughs in the applications of neural networks, the applicability of these techniques has been limited by the requirement for large amounts of training data. What’s more, the standard supervised machine learning method does not provide a satisfactory solution for learning new concepts from little data. However, the ability to learn enough information from few samples has been demonstrated in humans. This suggests that humans may make use of prior knowledge of a previously learned model when learning new ones on a small amount of training examples. In the area of autonomous driving, the model learns to drive the vehicle with training data from humans, and most machine learning based control algorithms require training on very large datasets. Collecting and constructing training data set takes a huge amount of time and needs specific knowledge to gather relevant information.
Technical Paper

Control Optimization of a Charge Sustaining Hybrid Powertrain for Motorsports

2018-04-03
2018-01-0416
The automotive industry is aggressively pursuing fuel efficiency improvements through hybridization of production vehicles, and there are an increasing number of racing series adopting similar architectures to maintain relevance with current passenger car trends. Hybrid powertrains offer both performance and fuel economy benefits in a motorsport setting, but they greatly increase control complexity and add additional degrees of freedom to the design optimization process. The increased complexity creates opportunity for performance gains, but simulation based tools are necessary since hybrid powertrain design and control strategies are closely coupled and their optimal interactions are not straightforward to predict. One optimization-related advantage that motorsports applications have over production vehicles is that the power demand of circuit racing has strong repeatability due to the nature of the track and the professional skill-level of the driver.
Journal Article

An Integrated Cooling System for Hybrid Electric Vehicle Motors: Design and Simulation

2018-04-03
2018-01-1108
Hybrid electric vehicles offer the advantages of reduced emissions and greater travel range in comparison to conventional and electric ground vehicles. Regardless of propulsion strategy, efficient cooling of electric motors remains an open challenge due to the operating cycles and ambient conditions. The onboard thermal management system must remove the generated heat so that the motors and other vehicle components operate within their designed temperature ranges. In this article, an integrated thermal structure, or cradle, is designed to efficiently transfer heat within the motor housing to the end plates for transmission to an external heat exchanger. A radial array of heat pipes function as an efficient thermal connector between the motor and heat connector, or thermal bus, depending on the configuration. Cooling performance has been evaluated for various driving cycles.
Technical Paper

VoGe: A Voice and Gesture System for Interacting with Autonomous Cars

2017-03-28
2017-01-0068
In the next 20 years fully autonomous vehicles are expected to be in the market. The advance on their development is creating paradigm shifts on different automotive related research areas. Vehicle interiors design and human vehicle interaction are evolving to enable interaction flexibility inside the cars. However, most of today’s vehicle manufacturers’ autonomous car concepts maintain the steering wheel as a control element. While this approach allows the driver to take over the vehicle route if needed, it causes a constraint in the previously mentioned interaction flexibility. Other approaches, such as the one proposed by Google, enable interaction flexibility by removing the steering wheel and accelerator and brake pedals. However, this prevents the users to take control over the vehicle route if needed, not allowing them to make on-route spontaneous decisions, such as stopping at a specific point of interest.
Technical Paper

Teaching Autonomous Vehicles How to Drive under Sensing Exceptions by Human Driving Demonstrations

2017-03-28
2017-01-0070
Autonomous driving technologies can provide better safety, comfort and efficiency for future transportation systems. Most research in this area has mainly been focused on developing sensing and control approaches to achieve various autonomous driving functions. Very little of this research, however, has studied how to efficiently handle sensing exceptions. A simple exception measured by any of the sensors may lead to failures in autonomous driving functions. The autonomous vehicles are then supposed to be sent back to manufacturers for repair, which takes both time and money. This paper introduces an efficient approach to make human drivers able to online teach autonomous vehicles to drive under sensing exceptions. A human-vehicle teaching-and-learning framework for autonomous driving is proposed and the human teaching and vehicle learning processes for handling sensing exceptions in autonomous vehicles are designed in detail.
Journal Article

A Virtual Driving Education Simulation System - Hardware and Software with Pilot Study

2013-04-08
2013-01-1407
Novice drivers are often ill-equipped to safely operate a motor vehicle due to their limited repertoire of skills and experiences. However, automotive simulation tools can be applied to better educate young drivers for a number of common driving scenarios. In this paper, the Clemson Automotive Training System (CATS) will be presented to educate and train novice drivers to safely operate four wheel passenger vehicles on paved roadways. A portable automotive simulator can be programmed to emulate a variety of high-crash rate scenarios and roadway geometries. Drivers receive instructions regarding proper driving techniques and behaviors with an opportunity to practice the given vehicle maneuver. An on-line evaluation methodology has been designed to analyze the drivers' capabilities at handling these roadway events. First, a pre-simulation questionnaire evaluates their basic understanding of everyday driving situations.
Journal Article

A Thermal Bus for Vehicle Cooling Applications - Design and Analysis

2017-03-28
2017-01-0266
Designing an efficient cooling system with low power consumption is of high interest in the automotive engineering community. Heat generated due to the propulsion system and the on-board electronics in ground vehicles must be dissipated to avoid exceeding component temperature limits. In addition, proper thermal management will offer improved system durability and efficiency while providing a flexible, modular, and reduced weight structure. Traditional cooling systems are effective but they typically require high energy consumption which provides motivation for a paradigm shift. This study will examine the integration of passive heat rejection pathways in ground vehicle cooling systems using a “thermal bus”. Potential solutions include heat pipes and composite fibers with high thermal properties and light weight properties to move heat from the source to ambient surroundings.
Journal Article

Modeling and Simulation of a Series Hybrid CNG Vehicle

2014-04-01
2014-01-1802
Predicting fuel economy during early stages of concept development or feasibility study for a new type of powertrain configuration is an important key factor that might affect the powertrain configuration decision to meet CAFE standards. In this paper an efficient model has been built in order to evaluate the fuel economy for a new type of charge sustaining series hybrid vehicle that uses a Genset assembly (small 2 cylinders CNG fueled engine coupled with a generator). A first order mathematical model for a Li-Ion polymer battery is presented based on actual charging /discharging datasheet. Since the Genset performance data is not available, normalized engine variables method is used to create powertrain performance maps. An Equivalent Consumption Minimization Strategy (ECMS) has been implemented to determine how much power is supplied to the electric motor from the battery and the Genset.
Journal Article

Automotive Driving Simulators: Research, Education, and Entertainment

2009-04-20
2009-01-0533
Automotive simulators offer an immersive environment to operate vehicle systems in a safe and repeatable manner. A fundamental question exists regarding their effectiveness for an identified task. For instance, driving simulators can play a significant role in evaluating vehicle designs, developing safety regulations, supporting human factors engineering research, administering driver training and education, and offering individual entertainment. Some of the driving simulator technology users include automotive manufacturers and suppliers, research laboratories at universities and government agencies, driver education and training programs, and motorsports and racing entertainment venues. In each case, the simulator capabilities and functionality must encompass the expectations of the driver to permit their perception of realistic scenarios for evaluation. This paper investigates three driving simulators in terms of their hardware and software, as well as their applications.
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