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ViriCiti and Fraunhofer report on prolonging battery life of electric buses and trucks

The Fraunhofer institute for Transportation and Infrastructure IVI, expert in the field of lithium-ion batteries, and real-time electric vehicle data specialist ViriCiti have been collaborating to prolong battery life and lower total cost of ownership of electric buses and trucks. Over the past months, they researched how battery life can be extended by altering specific aspects of operations. The outcome is a battery stress report that gives operation-specific advice on how to prolong the battery life. It is now available for ViriCiti’s international customers.

Electric vehicles are more expensive than diesel vehicles; the batteries are the most expensive part. In operation however, this is offset by the fact that electric kilometers are much cheaper than diesel kilometers. By driving more electric kilometers, the total cost of ownership of electric vehicles will ultimately be lower than those of diesel vehicles. It is therefore important that the vehicle stays healthy and the battery doesn’t need replacement before the end of its promised lifespan.

To prevent early degradation, the report focuses on power, temperature, Depth-of-Discharge (DOD) and State of Charge (SOC). It also provides a detailed analysis of the battery usage over the evaluated period of time as well as what factors have a negative impact on the life cycle.

The report describes how adapting the charging and operational regime—e.g. interchanging buses on steep roads—will reduce battery stress and increase health. By maximizing battery life, electric operations become cheaper and electric buses and trucks become competitive with diesel vehicles.

Based in Germany, Fraunhofer is Europe’s largest application-oriented research organization with 72 institutes and research units. The Fraunhofer IVI in Dresden focuses on the state of health of Li-Ion batteries, primarily in the field of traction batteries of electric vehicles.

ViriCiti is an IT company that supports electric bus and truck operators in optimizing their operations through data-insights. By analyzing and storing large amounts of vehicle data on millisecond level, ViriCiti provides input for detailed battery evaluations. ViriCiti’s company headquarters is based in Amsterdam but has recently added two locations in the United States.

Comments

HarveyD

Excellent idea but operators will have to convince their overpaid drivers to participate positively. That will not be easy unless the process is fully automated, at both the driver and charging end?

Alternatively, drivers who contribute with positive results could be compensated and drivers who do not could receive a cut in pay? A good case for the Supreme Court?

mahonj

Or, you could put diesel engines in the buses for occasional use, make them like range extender or PHEVs. If you have this, you can manage the charging depth much better and keep the batteries in use much longer.

@harvey, I had considered the idea of paying drivers to conserve fuel. My view was that it is easy to start, but hard to end..
Say you introduce it in year 1, and based the payback on the previous year's mpg - OK, the mpg will increase, and the guys get some cash.
What happens for year 2 - do you reset the base level to the year 1 levels (which will make the drivers unhappy), or leave it at year zero levels, which makes the bus company unhappy.
What if they get more efficient buses, do you have to reset the base levels ... It looks like an HR minefield.
Or, you could rank the drivers against each other, but that would favor drivers on the smoothest routes.
Or, you could rank the drivers by personal improvements over the last year or two, and they are ranked for a payout for the top 5(say) as long as there was a > 1% improvement.
But that would make it difficult to get them to switch routes.

Never simple, is it ...

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