|Argonne has developed a new tool—ARDAQ—for onboard data collection from and diagnostics of PHEVs. Click to enlarge.|
The US Department of Energy (DOE) and the Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to collaborate on accelerating consumer acceptance and commercialization of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). The MOU outlines a one year, US$1 million cost-sharing arrangement that will be equally funded by DOE and the Swedish Energy Agency.
DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory will work with Test Site Sweden to demonstrate plug-in technologies, support research and development (R&D), as well as share operational and consumer data and solutions to potential vehicle-to-grid. Over the next year, the following activities will take place under the MOU:
Proof of concepts to support PHEV development and introduction, e.g., vehicle instrumentation, vehicle-to-grid/home hardware and smart charging systems;
Tracking and evaluating customer behavior in field operational testing;
Quantification of national, utility, and customer benefits; and,
Planning and deployment of convenient public charging stations.
Argonne, which is the US’ lead lab for the simulation, validation and laboratory evaluation of PHEVs and PHEV technologies, has developed a new tool for the analysis and evaluation of plug-in hybrid vehicle performance: the Argonne Real-Time Data Acquisition (ARDAQ) system. ARDAQ provides onboard data collection and diagnostics of PHEVs.
ARDAQ is based on Controller Area Network (CAN) information collected on two separate CANs. CAN technology lets microcontrollers and other devices communicate without a host computer. ARDAQ then uses the global positioning system and other sensors to simultaneously collect moment-by-moment data on a package of 25 vehicle-performance measures, including driving and engine speed; fuel flow, use and economy; hybrid battery current; frequency of battery charge; hybrid watt-hours per mile; PHEV watt-hours per mile; and length and distance of trip.
Additionally, the standards for every performance measure are derived from physics-based computations, meaning that a range of factors is taken into account to calculate a single performance measure.
ARDAQ’s eight-ounce sensor module package can be quickly installed and can begin collecting information immediately. A month’s worth of data can be stored on a 1-gigabyte USB thumb drive. After a trip is completed, data from the thumb drive are uploaded to a personal computer and displayed using Google Earth. Eventually, wireless data transmission will be added to ARDAQ.
ARDAQ was recently used by judges to determine the winner of the Challenge X student competition. (Earlier post.)
The new MOU builds on a US-Sweden agreement signed in June 2007 that further expanded cooperation on renewable energy and vehicle technologies. (Earlier post.) The 2007 agreement focused cooperation on biomass production, transportation and automotive research, reducing the cost of renewable energy, and improving energy efficiency. It also established a bilateral working group to explore prospective projects.
In June, the governments of Sweden and the US also extended their cooperation with the Volvo Group on R&D on alternative fuels and hybrid solutions with a combined US$18 million grant from the DOE and the SEA. Volvo will provide a matching $18 million, for a combined $36 million investment. (Earlier post.)