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Journal Article

Analyzing Vehicle Fuel Saving Opportunities through Intelligent Driver Feedback

2012-04-16
2012-01-0494
While it is well known that “MPG will vary” based on how one drives, little independent research exists on the aggregate fuel savings potential of improving driver efficiency and on the best ways to motivate driver behavior changes. This paper finds that reasonable driving style changes could deliver significant national petroleum savings, but that current feedback approaches may be insufficient to convince many people to adopt efficient driving habits. To quantify the outer bound fuel savings for drive cycle modification, the project examines completely eliminating stop-and-go driving plus unnecessary idling, and adjusting acceleration rates and cruising speeds to ideal levels. Even without changing the vehicle powertrain, such extreme adjustments result in dramatic fuel savings of over 30%, but would in reality only be achievable through automated control of vehicles and traffic flow.
Technical Paper

Bayesian Parameter Estimation for Heavy-Duty Vehicles

2017-03-28
2017-01-0528
Accurate vehicle parameters are valuable for design, modeling, and reporting. Estimating vehicle parameters can be a very time-consuming process requiring tightly-controlled experimentation. This work describes a method to estimate vehicle parameters such as mass, coefficient of drag/frontal area, and rolling resistance using data logged during standard vehicle operation. The method uses a Monte Carlo method to generate parameter sets that are fed to a variant of the road load equation. The modeled road load is then compared to the measured load to evaluate the probability of the parameter set. Acceptance of a proposed parameter set is determined using the probability ratio to the current state, so that the chain history will give a distribution of parameter sets. Compared to a single value, a distribution of possible values provides information on the quality of estimates and the range of possible parameter values. The method is demonstrated by estimating dynamometer parameters.
Technical Paper

Design and Transient Simulation of Vehicle Air Conditioning Systems

2001-05-14
2001-01-1692
This paper describes the need for dynamic (transient) simulation of automotive air conditioning systems, the reasons why such simulations are challenging, and the applicability of a general purpose off-the-shelf thermohydraulic analyzer to answer such challenges. An overview of modeling methods for the basic components are presented, along with relevant approximations and their effect on speed and accuracy of the results.
Technical Paper

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

2015-09-29
2015-01-2739
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

Exploring Telematics Big Data for Truck Platooning Opportunities

2018-04-03
2018-01-1083
NREL completed a temporal and geospatial analysis of telematics data to estimate the fraction of platoonable miles traveled by class 8 tractor trailers currently in operation. This paper discusses the value and limitations of very large but low time-resolution data sets, and the fuel consumption reduction opportunities from large scale adoption of platooning technology for class 8 highway vehicles in the US based on telematics data. The telematics data set consist of about 57,000 unique vehicles traveling over 210 million miles combined during a two-week period. 75% of the total fuel consumption result from vehicles operating in top gear, suggesting heavy highway utilization. The data is at a one-hour resolution, resulting in a significant fraction of data be uncategorizable, yet significant value can still be extracted from the remaining data. Multiple analysis methods to estimate platoonable miles are discussed.
Technical Paper

FASTSim: A Model to Estimate Vehicle Efficiency, Cost and Performance

2015-04-14
2015-01-0973
The Future Automotive Systems Technology Simulator (FASTSim) is a high-level advanced vehicle powertrain systems analysis tool supported by the U.S. Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Office. FASTSim provides a quick and simple approach to compare powertrains and estimate the impact of technology improvements on light- and heavy-duty vehicle efficiency, performance, cost, and battery life. The input data for most light-duty vehicles can be automatically imported. Those inputs can be modified to represent variations of the vehicle or powertrain. The vehicle and its components are then simulated through speed-versus-time drive cycles. At each time step, FASTSim accounts for drag, acceleration, ascent, rolling resistance, each powertrain component's efficiency and power limits, and regenerative braking. Conventional vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, all-electric vehicles, compressed natural gas vehicles, and fuel cell vehicles are included.
Technical Paper

Fischer-Tropsch Diesel Fuels - Properties and Exhaust Emissions: A Literature Review

2003-03-03
2003-01-0763
Natural gas, coal, and biomass can be converted to diesel fuel through Fischer-Tropsch (F-T) processes. Variations of the F-T process and/or product work-up can be used to tailor the fuel properties to meet end-users needs. Regardless of feedstock or process, F-T diesel fuels typically have a number of very desirable properties. This review describes typical F-T diesel fuel properties, discusses how these fuel properties impact pollutant emissions, and draws together data from known engine and chassis dynamometer studies of emissions. The comparison of fuel properties reveals that F-T diesel fuel is typically one of two types - a very high cetane number (>74), zero aromatic product or a moderate cetane (∼60), low aromatic (≤15%) product. The very high cetane fuels typically have less desirable low temperature properties while the moderate cetane fuels have cold flow properties more typical of conventional diesel fuels.
Technical Paper

Fuel Used for Vehicle Air Conditioning: A State-by-State Thermal Comfort-Based Approach

2002-06-03
2002-01-1957
How much fuel does vehicle air conditioning actually use? This study attempts to answer that question to determine the national and state-by-state fuel use impact seen by using air conditioning in light duty gasoline vehicles. The study used data from US cities, representative of averages over the past 30 years, whose temperature, incident radiation, and humidity varied through time of day and day of year. National surveys estimated when people drive their vehicles during the day and throughout the year. A simple thermal comfort model based on Fanger's heat balance equations determined the percentage of time that a driver would use the air conditioning based on the premise that if a person were dissatisfied with the thermal environment, they would turn on the air conditioning. Vehicle simulations for typical US cars and trucks determined the fuel economy reduction seen with AC use.
Technical Paper

Heat of Vaporization and Species Evolution during Gasoline Evaporation Measured by DSC/TGA/MS for Blends of C1 to C4 Alcohols in Commercial Gasoline Blendstocks

2019-01-15
2019-01-0014
Evaporative cooling of the fuel-air charge by fuel evaporation is an important feature of direct-injection spark-ignition engines that improves fuel knock resistance and reduces pumping losses at intermediate load, but in some cases, may increase fine particle emissions. We have reported on experimental approaches for measuring both total heat of vaporization and examination of the evaporative heat effect as a function of fraction evaporated for gasolines and ethanol blends. In this paper, we extend this work to include other low-molecular-weight alcohols and present results on species evolution during fuel evaporation by coupling a mass spectrometer to our differential scanning calorimetry/thermogravimetric analysis instrument. The alcohols examined were methanol, ethanol, 1-propanol, isopropanol, 2-butanol, and isobutanol at 10 volume percent, 20 volume percent, and 30 volume percent.
Journal Article

Potentials for Platooning in U.S. Highway Freight Transport

2017-03-28
2017-01-0086
Smart technologies enabling connection among vehicles and between vehicles and infrastructure as well as vehicle automation to assist human operators are receiving significant attention as a means for improving road transportation systems by reducing fuel consumption – and related emissions – while also providing additional benefits through improving overall traffic safety and efficiency. For truck applications, which are currently responsible for nearly three-quarters of the total U.S. freight energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, platooning has been identified as an early feature for connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) that could provide significant fuel savings and improved traffic safety and efficiency without radical design or technology changes compared to existing vehicles. A statistical analysis was performed based on a large collection of real-world U.S. truck usage data to estimate the fraction of total miles that are technically suitable for platooning.
Journal Article

Review: Fuel Volatility Standards and Spark-Ignition Vehicle Driveability

2016-03-14
2016-01-9072
Spark-ignition engine fuel standards have been put in place to ensure acceptable hot and cold weather driveability (HWD and CWD). Vehicle manufacturers and fuel suppliers have developed systems that meet our driveability requirements so effectively that drivers overwhelmingly find that their vehicles reliably start up and operate smoothly and consistently throughout the year. For HWD, fuels that are too volatile perform more poorly than those that are less volatile. Vapor lock is the apparent cause of poor HWD, but there is conflicting evidence in the literature as to where in the fuel system it occurs. Most studies have found a correlation between degraded driveability and higher dry vapor pressure equivalent or lower TV/L = 20, and less consistently with a minimum T50. For CWD, fuels with inadequate volatility can cause difficulty in starting and rough operation during engine warmup.
Technical Paper

The Accuracy and Correction of Fuel Consumption from Controller Area Network Broadcast

2017-10-13
2017-01-7005
Fuel consumption (FC) has always been an important factor in vehicle cost. With the advent of electronically controlled engines, the controller area network (CAN) broadcasts information about engine and vehicle performance, including fuel use. However, the accuracy of the FC estimates is uncertain. In this study, the researchers first compared CAN-broadcasted FC against physically measured fuel use for three different types of trucks, which revealed the inaccuracies of CAN-broadcast fueling estimates. To match precise gravimetric fuel-scale measurements, polynomial models were developed to correct the CAN-broadcasted FC. Lastly, the robustness testing of the correction models was performed. The training cycles in this section included a variety of drive characteristics, such as high speed, acceleration, idling, and deceleration. The mean relative differences were reduced noticeably.
Technical Paper

The DOE/NREL Environmental Science & Health Effects Program - An Overview

1999-04-27
1999-01-2249
This paper summarizes current work in the Environmental Science & Health Effects (ES&HE) Program being sponsored by DOE's Office of Heavy Vehicle Technologies (OHVT) through the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The program is regulatory-driven, and focuses on ozone, airborne particles, visibility and regional haze, air toxics, and health effects of air pollutants. The goal of the ES&HE Program is to understand atmospheric impacts and potential health effects that may be caused by the use of petroleum-based and alternative transportation fuels. Each project in the program is designed to address policy-relevant objectives. Studies in the ES&HE Program have four areas of focus: improving technology for emissions measurements; vehicle emissions measurements, emission inventory development/improvement; and ambient impacts, including health effects.
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