Architectural requirements, and mechanical and thermal constraints imposed on an electrical power-train are much less stringent when compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) based vehicles. The needs for cost reduction and range enhancement demand light structures, advanced aerodynamic solutions and optimisation of the drive train.
The WIDE-MOB project addresses the design and development of electric vehicles basic building blocks. This includes:
- Optimised aerodynamic bodies with embedded synthetic micro-jets that radically reduce the drag at any speeds;
- Lightweight and low cost bodies designed for high safety under both frontal and lateral crash;
- Overall system optimisation based on distributed propulsion including:
- i) fail safe distributed propulsion;
- ii) e-motor and torque control of the wheel;
- iii) integrated power-energy management and distributed battery super-capacitor packs (high efficiencies over a wide torque/speed range demanded by real-use driving cycles);
- Application of EMC-EMR and low frequency electromagnetic field (EMF) design concepts based on 'prudent avoidance practices' for field mitigation on occupants. The high currents and voltages produced in electric drive trains pose new problems in terms of EMF which may become a health risk to occupants;
- Modular and reconfigurable design addressing the WIDEst needs with ergonomic on board space;
- Solar panels distributed on both horizontal and vertical surfaces with adaptive electronic for a higher range of operation and minimal needs of infrastructures.
The WIDE-MOB project will deliver:
- A prototype and demo vehicle for urban mobility integrating the proposed innovative concepts;
- Guidelines for the developed concepts to be widely applied to most electric vehicles (EVs) and hybrid electric vehicles (HEvs) architectures thus generating IPR and knowledge/experience upon which to build a world-leading EU position to track and exploit the global uptake of electrical mobility.
During the almost four years of the project, WIDE-MOB phase generated knowledge and solutions demonstrating that vehicles weighing less than 600kg before the battery can:
- Comply with the most stringent safety regulations applied for M1 vehicles on redundancy (fail safe), vehicle control stability, frontal and lateral collisions
- Be designed with performance (range, speed, acceleration and fun to drive) that can satisfy most people’s needs in terms of passenger vehicles, delivery of goods or leisure-sports
- Be equipped with smart solar panels that can harvest solar energy sufficient to avoid having to use a charging point many days of the year in most EU southern countries
The positive and successful experience of WIDE-MOB, in terms of novel knowledge and patents generated, established the base for a European platform for the development of micro electrical vehicles including standardization related aspects to make electrical mobility safer and more efficient.