UK-based electrified powertrain engineering consultancy Drive System Design (DSD) announced a strategic expansion of its test facilities, adding two further test cells for high-performance hybrid axles and e-machines. The move reflects a growing demand for outsourced test capacity suitable for electrified powertrains, as the industry prioritizes its development in response to global emissions concerns.
The first of the new facilities can deliver input torque up to 2,500 N·m at 2,100 rpm, 525 kW at 7,000 rpm, and 350 kW 1,100 V of battery emulation, with the second for e-machines up to 350 kW and 25,000 rpm. The new cells complement existing DSD facilities, which include a 450 kW highly transient ETPS machine (Engine Torque Pulse Simulator) and three battery emulators.
According to David Kelly, Director, Drive System Design, even the largest established vehicle manufacturers are struggling to accommodate the upsurge in test requirements using solely in-house facilities, and the situation is likely to become even more acute in future.
We are in the middle of a sea change in the industry, as the major players allocate more of their manufacturing to electrified vehicles. Companies like DSD can provide vital additional resource to help satisfy short-term peaks in testing demand as this change in policy takes effect.—David Kelly
DSD is continually developing its automation capabilities within the facility to help speed up testing. This has proven particularly effective in the case of hot and cold environment testing. According to Kelly, tests that previously took six weeks to complete can be finished in half the time with suitably configured automatic control.
DSD intends to have the new test cells operational in December this year.