Novel architectures for EV power management: About distributed architectures

September 08, 2011 // By Khamis Kadiri (PSA Peugeot Citroen), Valery E. Anisimov (Finprom-Resource), Philippe Briot (Briot & Associates)
Among technological challenges, the next generation of EV offers a unique opportunity to rethink its power management architecture. This paper will firstly analyze these architectural constraints from environmental, economical and safety point of view. Their impact and consequences on present vehicles will be described.

Secondly, the power distribution & control architecture options will be addressed and a comparison of centralized and fully distributed power network will be made. A detailed description of fully distributed prototype architecture will include new technological inserts, breakthrough power management functions, and the tackled EV present issues.

Finally, a roadmap for further research and development on distributed power management architecture will be drawn.

I. EV Systems Challenges: Electric Vehicle (EV) characteristics introduce a new paradigm in the Electric/Electronic (EE) architecture design. They impact more than 30% of essential classic vehicle functions, such as lateral dynamic control, in-car thermal management, fuel/mileage estimation, telematics & human-to-machine interface and, of course, electric energy management. New life phases are surfacing, requiring new functions to be developed: battery re-charging, thermal preconditioning, and specific EV services.

The future EV generations offer a lot of opportunities in developing and inserting new technologies in electrical motors, chassis and power mechatronics. They will embed new components that are presently researched by engineers all around the world. The long-awaited benefits of this massive ongoing research might be partly compromised by inefficient or non adapted vehicle EE architecture.

The present first EV generation is mostly based on technical solutions that are derived from existing combustion vehicles (see figure 1), comprising a similar EE platform with specific add-ons. The second generation will integrate optimized power subsystems. We believe that EE platform breakthrough will arise within the 2018-2020, enabling a fully optimized third generation to reach the market. This paper shares our vision and provides a status of some research that was conducted on breakthrough EE EV platforms.

The basic function of EV is energy distribution, supported by power distribution. This function has to be combined with the rest of the architecture, with minimum weight, volume and cost. The "ideal" power architecture is therefore compromised to meet all "non power" requirements.

Figure 1. Electric Vehicle EE platform roadmap. For full resolution click here

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