Sustainable Vehicle Technologies

Sustainable Vehicle Technologies is one of six profile areas within Chalmers Energy Area of Advance, and is shared with the Transport Area of Advance. This profile tackles the challenge of reducing carbon dioxide emissions from transport which today is an energy-demanding sector that to a large extent relies on fossil fuels.
 
Passenger and freight transportation contributes globally to about one fifth of the energy use and of the energy related carbon dioxide emissions. Many projections indicate that energy use and carbon dioxide emissions from transport could rise sharply in the future. To address this challenge, the Swedish Government has the ambition of a vehicle fleet for road-based transport independent of fossil fuels already in 2030.
 
The research within the Sustainable Vehicle Technologies profile should contribute to sustainable and energy efficient vehicle design and operation. Our vision is a highly energy efficient transport system, that uses renewable energy sources, and have no net emissions of greenhouse gases.

Active research fields

Sustainable Vehicle Technologies has four active research fields:

  • Combustion engine research
    Research in this field encompasses internal combustion engines and after-treatment systems and aims at increasing the energy efficiency and reducing the exhaust emissions.
  • Electric and hybrid vehicles
    This active research field comprises hybrid powertrain design and control, electric motors and converters, and energy storage systems.
  • Vehicle concepts and design
    The research in this field encompasses reduced resistance, noise reduction, advanced structures and materials, as well as maintenance, durability, and robustness.
  • Vehicle environmental impact
    This field comprises systems analysis, policy analysis and market formation, recycling of vehicle batteries, emissions measurement and impacts, and eco-operation.

Although the research within the active fields applies to all modes of transport, vehicle technologies for road transport are dominating.

Ongoing activities

One important aim for this profile is to facilitate collaboration between Chalmers’ different research competence centres and departments within the topic of sustainable vehicle technologies. The profile also aims for facilitating research exchange with other universities and industry. This is achieved through workshops, seminars, and conferences.
 
The profile has initiated several research work packages, the majority as parts of the large interdisciplinary effort to improve scientific knowledge regarding next generation hybrid electric vehicles. The topics of these research work packages are:
  • Optimized engine control for hybrid drive lines
  • Active cell balancing
  • Enhanced total energy efficiency in electric motors and converters
  • Li-sulphur technology in energy storage systems
  • The Swedish car movement database
  • Active flow control for reduced resistance
  • Environmental assessments
  • Control system design for hybrid vehicles
  • Internal Combustion engines for hybrid vehicles
  • Catalysis for emission control for hybrid vehicles
  • Emission cleaning from methane engines
  • Fuels for the shipping sector: the role of electrofuels
  • Optical remote sensing of ship plumes
 
Read more about the Sustainable Vehicle Technologies profile and the planned activities in the Short version profile plan for Sustainable Vehicle Technologies 2015–2019.

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Published: Tue 05 Jan 2016. Modified: Fri 01 Dec 2017