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Title: Climate Control Load Reduction Strategies for Electric Drive Vehicles in Cold Weather

When operated, the climate control system is the largest auxiliary load on a vehicle. This load has significant impact on fuel economy for conventional and hybrid vehicles, and it drastically reduces the driving range of all electric vehicles (EVs). Heating is even more detrimental to EV range than cooling because no engine waste heat is available. Reducing the thermal loads on the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system will extend driving range and increase the market penetration of EVs. Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory have evaluated strategies for vehicle climate control load reduction with special attention toward grid connected electric vehicles. Outdoor vehicle thermal testing and computational modeling were used to assess potential strategies for improved thermal management and to evaluate the effectiveness of thermal load reduction technologies. A human physiology model was also used to evaluate the impact on occupant thermal comfort. Experimental evaluations of zonal heating strategies demonstrated a 5.5% to 28.5% reduction in cabin heating energy over a 20-minute warm-up. Vehicle simulations over various drive cycles show a 6.9% to 18.7% improvement in EV range over baseline heating using the most promising zonal heating strategy investigated. A national-level analysis was conducted to determine the overallmore » national impact. If all vehicles used the best zonal strategy, the range would be improved by 7.1% over the baseline heating range. This is a 33% reduction in the range penalty for heating.« less
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: empty
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: SAE International Journal of Passenger Cars - Mechanical Systems; Journal Volume: 9; Journal Issue: 1; Related Information: SAE International Journal of Passenger Cars - Mechanical Systems
Research Org:
NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States))
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Vehicle Technologies Office (EE-3V)
Country of Publication:
United States
30 DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION electric vehicle; thermal load; load reduction; climate control; fuel economy