How do we decide which technologies to adopt for our next zero emissions vehicle? Mike Dempsey, Managing Director of Claytex
We are living through a technological revolution. The internal combustion engine, at least as we know it, is dead.
Every automotive manufacturer is now locked in a race against time to develop, and deliver clean green vehicles, capable of the performance standards their customers know, and more importantly, expect. By 2030, cars with petrol or diesel engines will be banned from sale in the UK. Across the pond, the state of California will prohibit the sale of petrol engine passenger vehicles from 2035. The European Union is expected to introduce similar curbs soon, in line with their stated commitment to net zero emissions by 2050.
Ready or not, automotive OEMs need to rapidly pivot and adopt new powertrain technologies, or face being unable to access hundreds of millions of consumers in some of the world’s richest markets.
To complicate matters, there’s no clear technological path forwards. Battery powered vehicles are a popular solution, although current technology means they cannot match the overall performance of a petrol- or diesel powered vehicle at this time. On the horizon however, new battery and charging technology could change this but there are also other competing technologies under development, such as hydrogen fuel cells.
Recent history also tells us that the scientific consensus can change. Bio ethanol once appeared to be the heir apparent to fossil fuels. So, who knows what propulsion technologies will be favoured 5, 10 or 15 years into the future?
Systems modelling and simulation comprise one of the key tools that OEMs and their suppliers can utilise to assess the different competing technologies. At Claytex we have been using systems models for over 20 years to assess the impacts of different hybrid and electric vehicle technologies. We have applied these simulation tools to look at drive cycle energy consumption, active vehicle dynamics capabilities and thermal management linked with human comfort.
Systems modelling and simulation
With so many different approaches and technologies to assess, simulation is vital to enable data driven decision making. Your choice of simulation tool, however, can either make this straightforward, or require a huge amount of effort to get even basic answers. This is because the questions you need to answer involve complex multi-physics systems.
A simulation tool capable of simulating the full range of physics involved in an accessible, convenient system orientated approach can really make the task easier. You are now able to dig deeper into the technologies and ask more complex questions before you make critical decisions.
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