DOE awarding up to $12M to support development of static and possibly quasi-dynamic wireless charging for plug-in vehicles
|Wireless charging elements. Click to enlarge.|
The US Department of Energy will award up to $12 million of Federal funding under a new funding opportunity (DE-FOA-0000667) to develop wireless chargers for Grid-connected Electric Drive Vehicles (GCEDVs). The maximum individual award under the FOA is $8 million; the floor is $2 million. DOE anticipates making approximately two to four awards under the announcement. The cost share must be at least 20% of the total allowable costs for R&D projects and 50% of the total allowable costs for demonstration and commercial application projects.
The objective of the FOA is to research and develop a production-feasible wireless charging system; integrate the system into a production-intent vehicle; and to demonstrate the technology’s readiness to deliver the benefits of static (and possibly quasi-dynamic) wireless charging to drivers of light-duty (10,000 lb Gross Vehicle Weight Rating or less) GCEDVs.
While the primary focus of this project is the advancement of static and possibly quasi-dynamic charging, DOE recognizes that the research and demonstration results of this FOA may contribute to the future development of dynamic charging capability. This project is intended to demonstrate wireless charging technology while being cost-competitive and compliant with safety standards.
Wireless charging technology has the potential to significantly increase acceptance and convenience of GCEDVs while possibly enabling smaller battery pack size, reduced vehicle weight, extended electric driving range, and economic benefits. In the near term, static wireless charging technology will provide hands-free automated charging of a parked vehicle. This provides the convenience and freedom of static wireless charging where the driver’s efforts are reduced to parking in a specified location instead of plugging in the vehicle.
In the medium term, quasi-dynamic wireless charging may provide energy to vehicles during a trip when the vehicle is not in motion but still in gear, such as when stopped at a traffic light, to extend the GCEDV’s range. In the long term, dynamic wireless charging could deliver energy to moving vehicles en route to their destinations.
Quasi-dynamic and dynamic charging has the potential to reduce the GCEDV’s total energy storage requirements with cascading benefits of lighter and smaller battery packs, lighter vehicles, more range per unit of energy, and increased electric range for the consumer.—DE-FOA-0000667
Widespread adoption of current wireless charging technology into US production vehicles faces a number of potential hurdles, according to the DOE:
- lower efficiency;
- increased development, vehicle integration, production and installation costs;
- evolving standards; and
- a limited track record demonstrating safe and reliable operations when integrated into a vehicle.
DOE intends to select up to four projects. Over the three-year period of this activity, applicants that are selected for participation are each to develop and/or to refine their wireless charging technology; to integrate the technology into a light duty GCEDV; and to test the performance in a demonstration fleet comprised of at least 5 vehicles. Plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) and extended-range electric vehicles (EREVs) used in the demonstrations must incorporate electrical energy storage sufficient to provide at least 10 miles (16 km) of all-electric range, i.e., cumulative vehicle movement with the engine off, on the Urban Dynamometer Driving Schedule (UDDS). The EVs must have a minimum electric range of 80 miles (129 km). The vehicles are to meet all applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards and emissions requirements.
Each demonstration vehicle needs to have a complete on-board wireless charging system and a wireless charging station for each vehicle during the demonstration phase of this project. Each project will need to perform laboratory and real world testing of the systems and vehicles. During the final year of the program period, the technology will be independently evaluated by DOE National Laboratories.
The wireless charging system developed must meet the following design requirements:
power transfer efficiency greater than 85%, based on measured input power at the wall source and measured output power at the GCEDV high voltage direct current (DC) bus;
- nominal power transfer of at least 3.3 kW (higher is encouraged); and
gap spacing and alignment flexibility over a reasonable range, consistent with conditions that would be experienced in real-world conditions.
The projects are to include three phases, with go/no-go decisions at the conclusion of Phase I and Phase II:
Technology Development. In this phase, the project team will develop and test wireless power transfer for static charging (and possibly quasi-dynamic charging). The project is to develop the technology sufficiently for integration into the target demon vehicles. Initial development and stand-alone laboratory testing of the advanced wireless charging technology shall be completed within 12 months of Phase I initiation.
Technology Integration. During phase II, the approved technology is to be integrated into a production or production-intent system and vehicle. Integration of the wireless charging technology into the GCEDV and a commercial viability analysis shall be completed within 12 months of Phase II initiation. In addition to meeting the design requirements, the project team will need to complete a commercial viability analysis, supported by a cost benefits, market penetration, and petroleum reduction analysis to include comparison with a plug-in conductive charging system compliant with the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) standard J1772.
Technology Demonstration. During the Technology Demonstration Phase, the project will demonstrate static (and possibly quasi-dynamic) wireless charging of the integrated system in laboratory and real world vehicle operations of a light duty GCEDV fleet (at least five vehicles and charging stations). Real world on-road demonstration of the charging system technology needs to be initiated within 3 months of successful completion of Phase II, and completed within 12 months of Phase III initiation.
The project needs to test and validate conformance of the wireless charging system to applicable safety and EMF emissions standards; to test and to validate the vehicle and wireless charging system performance, reliability, interoperability, and flexibility during laboratory and real world on-road tests of static charging (and possibly quasi-dynamic) of the GCEDVs; to collect data from the charging system demonstration during Phase III demonstration; and to provide one vehicle and one wireless charging system to a DOE selected national laboratory for additional independent validation testing within the first three months of Phase III, and demonstrated for the duration of Phase III.
The project is to support DOE evaluation of the technology through periodic data reporting of laboratory and real-world on-road operational tests. This is to include providing DOE with the data collected during the Phase III demonstration period. The project also needs to inform DOE regarding the applicability of the technology to dynamic charging.