Automotive Design and Production

APR 2018

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NOTABLE Dark for Light. Although this image is fairly dark, that's because it is showing the driving simulator, the VRX 2018, developed by OPTIS ( optis-world.com ) that's specifically designed for the development of advanced lighting systems, including AFS, ADB matrix beam and pixel beam. Explains Nicolas Orand, Product Development director at OPTIS, "With VRX 2018, OEMs can deliver highly qualitative and smart lighting, adapted to all conditions, for their customers and everyone on the road. Testing lighting systems virtually and adding control logic features results in a safer end product, which builds on a brand's reputation for safety and high quality, as well as significantly reducing time to market." The system allows assessing the lighting system against the IIHS ( iihs. org ) standards—and given that in order to receive a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the organization, headlights are assessed in addition to crashworthiness, so that is a key consideration for lighting execution. Autonomy and Energy One of the potential benefits of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) is that they can reduce the amount of energy used. Can. According to Gregory Keoleian, director of the Center for Sustainable Systems at the University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability, "Our findings highlight the need to focus on energy effi- ciency when designing autonomous vehicles so that the full environmental benefits of this emerging, transformative technology can be realized." For one thing, there's the issue of the powertrain for the CAV. Researchers looked at both internal combustion engine and battery-electric setups. According to a study lead by author Jim Gawron, a graduate student at the U-M School for Environment and Sustainability and at the Ross School of Business, "A battery-electric vehicle is a better platform for CAV components compared to the internal-combustion engine vehicle in terms of minimiz- ing environmental impacts." They calculated the lifetime greenhouse gas emissions from the electric powertrain can be 40 percent lower. One of the reasons that this is the case is because they found that there are inefficiencies involved in producing electricity from fuel combustion. And you may be surprised at how critical electricity is to CAVs. For example, consider the high-definition maps that are wirelessly trans- mitted over 4G networks to vehicles. While these maps are highly important for autonomous operation, they are also power-hungry, at least compared with standard-definition maps. The difference in greenhouse gases emitted over a vehicle's lifetime: the standard-definition map is 35 percent lower than the high-definition map. According to Dr. Keoleian, "a non-HD map requires less energy than an HD map since the energy use is dependent on the amount of data transmit- ted. It is estimated that a non-HD map requires a data rate of 1.4 MB/mile, while HD maps need 600 MB/mile. 4G networks use approximately 1.25 MJ of life cycle energy per GB of transmitted data. Therefore, non-HD maps use 0.0018 MJ/mile and HD maps use 0.75 MJ/mile." Or consider the computer that is instrumental in providing the auton- omous capability. The researchers looked at various sized systems, small, medium and large. Taking the medium-sized sensing and computing subsystem, and Keoleian says the subsystem is defined as "the extra components and sensors required to turn a conventionally driven vehicle to a CAV," the mass is 22.4 kg. Of that, the computer is 45 percent of the total mass. In addition to which, it consumes 80 percent of the power used by the entire subsystem and is responsible for 43 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions. Other factors that were looked at include the aerodynamic drag that results from the addition of the sensors that are added to the exteriors of vehicles in order to make them autonomy-capable. Overall, the researchers conclude that, using data from a National Renewable Energy Laboratory study titled "Estimated Bounds and Important Factors for Fuel Use and Consumer Costs of Connected and Automated Vehicles," CAVs can use 14 percent less fuel than conventional vehicles. The research was conducted with grants from the Ford Motor Co.—GSV This is a Lincoln MKZ test vehicle at the connected and autonomous development facility Mcity in Ann Arbor. Clearly, the instrumentation on the outside of the vehicle can have an effect on the aero. So in order to attain greater efficiency, it is going to be important that the extra gear is reduced in size and integrated into the vehicle. 16 GEAR

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