Energy Consumption of Thermal Conditioning System for Heavy-duty Electric Vehicles

University essay from KTH/Energiteknik

Abstract: The deployment of electric vehicles has speeded up during the past ten years. As heavy-duty trucks are a significant source of GHG emissions, electrification is an encouraging way to lead to sustainability beyond doubt. However, some constraints regarding electric vehicles have emerged. Range extension is a primary challenge of the development of electric vehicles, where thermal conditioning systems can have a considerable impact. Some researches have been done on electric passenger vehicles. However, studies regarding the energy consumption for the thermal conditioning system of heavy-duty electric vehicles are scarcely provided.This study therefore focuses on estimating the energy consumption for the auxiliary heating/cooling and studying the influence of the ambient temperature, vehicle velocity, payload, and driving cycles. A designed integrated thermal conditioning system model was constructed in GT-SUITE, with three subsystems to provide thermal comfort for the truck cabin, meet the operative temperature for battery packs and condition the power electronics and the electric machine. Calibrations were done and yielded acceptable relative errors less than 10%, regarding the cabin and battery heaters.The study shows that the thermal conditioning system consumes the most energy during extremely cold weather, reaching up to 10 kW when the ambient temperature is lower than -20℃. Moreover, the energy consumption during heating/cooling will increase if the vehicle velocity increases. However, it remains stable during mild weather. Payload has different impacts on the energy consumption for heating and cooling. As higher payload results in higher waste heat from the electric machine and batteries, it alleviates the heating while burdens the cooling. Four different driving cycles were simulated, and the result reveals that despite the cycle with the lowest average speed has the highest energy consumption/km, however has the lowest average power.

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