Kettering University researchers tapped to develop high efficiency charger for PowerAmerica

Kettering University researchers in the Advanced Power Electronics Lab (APEL) are part of a team tasked by PowerAmerica with developing a high efficiency silicon carbide (SiC) electric vehicle battery charger. The project is a collaboration between researchers at Kettering University, University of Michigan-Dearborn and HELLA North America. The Kettering team, led by Dr. Kevin Bai, Electrical and Computer Engineering associate professor and director of APEL, completed a similar project with HELLA in 2015 that resulted in the development of a 7.2 kW, ~98 percent efficiency gallium nitride (GaN) charger.

The collaboration between Kettering, HELLA, PowerAmerica and UM-Dearborn is a $400,000 project that was kicked off on June 1, 2016. The research team consists of Bai, one research engineer, one graduate student and multiple undergraduate co-op students from Kettering; a PhD student from UM-Dearborn; and two engineers from HELLA. Kettering also joined PowerAmerica as a member in June of 2016. Bai anticipates the project will be successfully completed by June of 2017.


Solar based Bidirectional Battery Charging Station for Electric Vehicles sponsored by CZAR Power Ltd

Next-generation High-efficiency Battery Charger for Electric Vehicles sponsored by Hella Coporate Center USA Inc

Wide-bandgap Device Based 720V/380V 5kW DC/DC Converter sponsored by Bosch LLC and GaN Systems Inc

2.5kW 95%-efficiency Electric Alternator sponsored by Chrysler LLC

This project is to help Chrysler LLC design a 2.5kW 95%-efficiency isolated electric alternator for electric vehicles. This device is used to transfer power between 400V Li-Ion battery pack and 12V Lead-Acid battery. In addition to soft-switching control, a novel Maximum Efficiency Tracking Control is used to realize SRC for the secondary MOSFETs through software.

The whole project is a codevelopment between APEL and Chrysler Powertrain Group. The system is able to deliver 2.5kW when input varies from 450V to 200V and output varies from 14V to 6V. Simplorer is used to simulate the system performance.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Wei Guo, Allan Taylor, Chenguang Jiang and Chen Duan

12V/1kW Motor Drive System for an Exhaust Burner’s Secondary Air sponsored by Tenneco 

In order to decrease the emission of diesel engine vehicles, APEL and Tenneco collaborated to develop a 12V/1kW motor drive system to drive an air pump for a burner, which will provide supplemental heat as needed to manage particulate filter soot loads and activate catalysts to further reduce emissions. Soft switching along with advanced system packaging technologies are adopted. Whole system efficiency is >90%.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Allan Taylor, Nelson Wang

Three-phase 11kW 97%-Efficiency PFC for Battery Chargers in PHEV sponsored by Magna Ecar

APEL worked with Magna Ecar to design a 97% efficiency front-end Power Factor Correction Controller. System efficiency is 97% at 10kW and 98% at 6kW.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Allan Taylor and Gyula Szatmari-Voicu

10kW 97%-Efficiency DC/DC Converter for A Battery Charger in PHEV sponsored by Magna Ecar

APEL worked with Magna Ecar to design a 97% efficiency DC/DC converter. System efficiency is 97% at 10kW when charging the battery from 250V to 400V, and 95.9% at 8kW when battery voltage >400V.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Allan Taylor and Gyula Szatmari-Voicu

2kW Wireless Charger For PHEV

APEL team designed a 2kW wireless charger. Overall system efficiency is >86% when charging the battery at 2kW. Distance between on-board and off-board parts >15cm. This project now is seeking the sponsors.

55kW Electric Powertrain for Electric Vehicles for China EV market

APEL designed a 55kW electric powertrain. The system includes one control board and one gate-drive board. The whole board dimension is 4.5 in * 7.5 in. IGBT Hybrid Pack 1 is used. The whole system design adopts all vehicle-level components. Field Oriented Control is used to drive a 55kW Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor. Various system protections are included to enhance the reliability, which include but not limited
Over voltage/current;
Under voltage/current;
Phase open circuit;
Over temperature;
IGBT desaturation;
Humidity protection (coolant leaking);
Under voltage of 12V lead-acid battery…

APEL right now is collaborating tightly with China companies to design a 100kW battery exchange/charging stations, 100kW DC/AC inverter, etc. The next step is to 1) replace the present DSP with vehicle-level controllers (e.g., PowerPC) and 2) realize higher system integration.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Wei Guo, Allan Taylor, Gyula Szatmari-Voicu

Extended Kalman Filter Based Battery SOC Online Estimation for PDI Inc

APEL used Extended Kalman Filter to realize battery SOC estimation. Experimental results show that EKF method has higher accuracy than present Coulomb Counting method and is as accurate as OCV method. This control system was successfully used for PDI, a Michigan local battery company to estimate the impact of different charging algorithms on the battery lifetime.

PI: Kevin Bai
Research Team: Mori Yatsui, Nick Cramer and Xi Zheng

Electric Scooter for US College Students

APEL team right now is collaborating with Mahindra to design an E scooter for US college students.

PI: Kevin Bai
Team: APEL