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Volkswagen Working On 3-Year Project To Improve EV Range

Volkswagen CEOA 3-year, €2 million research project to improve electric vehicle ranges and the electromagnetic compatibility of associated systems is now being worked on by researchers at the Otto-von-Guericke-Universität Magdeburg, in collaboration with Volkswagen AG and AEM (Anhaltische Elektromotorenwerk Dessau), according to recent reports.

A researcher on the project, Professor Dr Roberto Leidhold, commented on the nature of work: “The fundamental problem with the use of electric motors is the high battery wear and energy consumption when the permanent load peaks during acceleration. If we are able to cache the regenerated braking energy in an additional capacitor, the energy could then be available for renewed acceleration processes. The number of charge cycles would be thus reduced, extending the range of the vehicle.”

With this in mind, the researchers are working on a new configuration in which constant baseload power would come off of the main battery pack, and peak consumption (acceleration, etc.) would be sourced from an regenerative-braking-supplied intermediate store.

Another researcher, Professor Dr Ralf Vick, commented on the accompanying “problem” of electromagnetic compatibility: “Due to the interference of the individual components in the electric vehicle, it could happen that when accelerating, the car radio breaks down or security-related technology such as the ABS is affected. We have, with the largest EMC anechoic chamber on German university campus, the expertise accurately to measure, analyze and then minimize the mutual influence and interference during operation or even eliminate it.”

Interesting enough research I guess, but economical application and technical possibility aren’t the same thing. Who knows at this point if these explorations will lead to anything of commercial value.

Written By

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.


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