Electric Vehicle Development -an overview
The largest industry in the world is Agriculture. A billion people are employed and contributing $1.3 trillion dollars per annum to the GDP. Indian agriculture sector contributes 18 % Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of overall India’s GDP and 50 % of Indian population is employed through this agricultural sector as stated in the economic survey of India. Farmers suffer due to recent development in IT sectors, industrialization and insufficient manpower. In addition to the above setbacks present farm equipment and machinery are operated through fossil fuel. The depleting fossil fuel resources and increasing emission poses a threat to humanity. Thus, increasing energy demand and requirement of decarbonization are the key challenges in the today’s fossil fuels-era.
EVs in Agriculture
In the current energy scenario, agriculture and transportation are key sectors in respect of carbon concentration is ahead of sustainability point.
“Image Courtesy: Farmonsunshine Solar @ Envision Solar”
Farm equipment manufacturing industries are taking huge effort to deploy the electric drive technology in the agricultural sector to make the sector self-sustained in the near future. Further, the Government also promotes Electric Vehicles (EVs) through multiple subsidies. But in spite of these efforts the growth of electric drive technology in farm equipment applications is slow due to the issues like slow charging process, limited energy storage, under developed battery technology and lack of awareness about the benefits to the farmers etc.
The market analysis shows that hybrid electric vehicles will hold the grip in the agricultural sector in the forthcoming years. To facilitate promote the Electric Vehicles in the Agriculture field new electric tractors are introduced in the Auto Expo conducted at Delhi in January 2020.However the cost of vehicle is high due to high cost of battery and low efficiency. Hence Policy makers and consumers shows special interest in developing the Electric mobility (e-mobility) transportation and agriculture sectors.
Market analysis ETs (“Image Courtesy: Economic Times of India)
EV in transportation
An Italian study shows, in the past few years, e-mobility gains considerable improvement in the usability point of view. A conclusion has been made, that approximately twenty five percentage of the city transportation could be replaced by electric vehicles and in urban areas transportation, EVs are covering a large share of the non-commercial mobility. Which are covered by conventional IC engine based vehicles. Due to minimum modal change, the fifty percentage targets of EVs are already achieved in urban areas. Also, an another study conducted in Swiss county shows that considerable replacement potential for EVs implementation even if the initial cost of battery is high.
The battery operated power train vehicles are used in various industries like agriculture, automotive, and manufacturing sectors. In farm field battery operated robots are used in multipurpose works such as water sprinkling, standalone harvesting, and sensing. The fossil fuel operated Internal Combustion Engines (ICEs) tractors are replaced by battery operated power trains in near future.
The electric power train technology of HEVs and EVs includes inverters, motors, Control unit and batteries that are used to rapidly create optimum combinations of electrical components. In this component batteries are energy source and motor and inverter are the energy consumers.
Electric Motor used in EVs:
The other part of power train in electric mobility is electric motor, induction motors are used in BMW mini EVs. However, most EV manufacturer prefers Permanent Magnet Brushless DC (PMBLDC) motor because of higher efficiency even though presence of other choice like switched reluctance motors. Longer life time and higher power density of PMDC motors made the advantage even if high cost. In near future all hybrid electric and pure electric vehicles moves towards the towards the permanent magnet motors for power drives.
Additionally, power electronics converter developments for e mobility has not reached desired level and hence research community need to focus the development of power converter which is an another high priority research area. There are several study focus on alternating power deployment of tractor operated using internal combustion Engine (ICE) and study suggested that drivelines with fuel cell (FC), reformed methanol fuel cell (RMFC) and electric battery (EB), are found that heavy-duty and medium tractors. Due to overweight the ICE are swapped with Electric drive.
The Feasibility study of Heavy Duty Farm Tractor is conducted with battery under different load condition and it is found that Electric motor operated tractor has few of mechanical components, low maintenance cost and low spare parts costs results lower operating cost. In order to overcome the above setbacks and to provide motors for hybrid applications, a considerable development has been made in the last ten years. In the today’s market Toyota experienced in developing advanced controller, power converter and motor for power drive in e mobility.
The next generation Camry Hybrid which can deliver a power of more than 100 kWpeak . In the conventional speed control of motor is achieved by means of field weakening method and results more loss at high speed operation. An advanced controller developed by Toyota and it was found to be used regulate the voltage that allowed tailoring input voltage to motor at high speed. The optimal design of an electric powertrain will reduce the weight to size ratio for standard operation of the tractor.
“Image Courtesy: https://www.autocarindia.com/”
Toyota developed a power control unit and it is compact size, light weight and high efficient than others Power Control Unit (PCU).The PCU regulates the voltage and convert the 14 V DC into three phase alternating current supply The PCU drive the motor and generators of power train.
Thus exploitation of Electric vehicle has slowdown due to high cost of vehicle and insufficient charging infrastructure and inefficient powertrain technology. Hence, more research and development is needed in the area of efficient energy conversion system loss, low cost energy storage system and smart charging station. This development of Electric vehicle will promote sustainable development in agriculture and transportation sectors.