Electromobile, together

October 18, 2011

Not buying cars but sharing them -- car-sharing is practiced in many major cities. And in the electromobile future, city dwellers will use lots of vehicles and infrastructure together -- that is the idea of Fraunhofer researchers. In the project "eMobility Together: Vehicles, Data and Infrastructure" or "GeMo" for short, researchers are working to make this vision a reality.

Lower emissions, less noise, more quality of life - all good reasons to turn to electricity where mobility is concerned. If the EU has its way, we will all be driving only electric cars in the major cities of Europe by the year 2050. A beautiful goal, but experts are going even further than that: citizens can forego a car of their own and share electric vehicles.

A project goal is to develop technological solutions that make electromobility possible to begin with. The main prerequisite is a well-developed network of publicly accessible recharging infrastructure. An inductive recharging system is even more convenient and quicker than charging through a cable connection. „Cordless charging is the key technology for across-the-board shared mobility. That's why we're focusing on this development," notes project coordinator Florian Rothfuss of the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO. He and his team are working on a bidirectional inductive charging system that can draw energy if needed but also feed it back into the shared grid as well. This makes each individual car a tiny storage battery that relieves the grid from high fluctuations. The biggest problems facing electric cars to date have been excessive charge times and a small driving range. To charge vehicles quickly and make them available with the largest possible driving range for the next user, the system will be designed with 22 kW. With this level of output, it takes only about an hour before a car is ready to return to the road. Another benefit of the inductive approach to charging is that it can be integrated into the road surface itself. This way, there are no pillars or boxes to impede traffic.

Networked through the cloud

If all of the citizens in a city want to share in the use of electric cars, then the users and the vehicles must be able to communicate with one another. The mobility-data cloud, a public, Internet-based platform, will unite all of the data important to a city's transportation system. „The cloud is an area of focus of this project, and it combines all of our subsystems," Rothfuss explains. „It is the central compilation point for of all of the relevant data. This information is then available through defined interfaces and provides the basis for various mobility services." Via smartphone, the user has access to available vehicles and charging stations, carpooling databases and information about local public transportation. In a protected personal interface the user can then select, reserve and pay for a car. The nexus between cloud, car, charging stations and personal mobile device is a newly developed on-board unit (OBU) installed in every vehicle. This central communications unit can determine a car's charge level and location; it also performs tasks such as access and code management.

Shared eMobility is not reserved to drivers, however. The same technology can be applied to other means of transportation - to Segways, for instance, the electric one-person scooter. To field-test the OBU and the built-in inductive charging system, the project will equip two demonstration vehicles with the technology - one passenger vehicle and one Segway.

Participants in the GeMo project include the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Communication Systems ESK in Munich, as well as the Fraunhofer Institutes for Open Communication Systems FOKUS in Berlin; for Industrial Engineering IAO in Stuttgart; for Integrated Circuits IIS in Erlangen; for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg; and for Transportation and Infrastructure Systems IVI in Dresden.

GeMo is one of seven „Markets Beyond Tomorrow" projects. In these projects, researchers are working to find solutions to the pressing problems of the future.
-end-


Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

Related Technology Articles from Brightsurf:

December issue SLAS Technology features 'advances in technology to address COVID-19'
The December issue of SLAS Technology is a special collection featuring the cover article, ''Advances in Technology to Address COVID-19'' by editors Edward Kai-Hua Chow, Ph.D., (National University of Singapore), Pak Kin Wong, Ph.D., (The Pennsylvania State University, PA, USA) and Xianting Ding, Ph.D., (Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China).

October issue SLAS Technology now available
The October issue of SLAS Technology features the cover article, 'Role of Digital Microfl-uidics in Enabling Access to Laboratory Automation and Making Biology Programmable' by Varun B.

Robot technology for everyone or only for the average person?
Robot technology is being used more and more in health rehabilitation and in working life.

Novel biomarker technology for cancer diagnostics
A new way of identifying cancer biomarkers has been developed by researchers at Lund University in Sweden.

Technology innovation for neurology
TU Graz researcher Francesco Greco has developed ultra-light tattoo electrodes that are hardly noticeable on the skin and make long-term measurements of brain activity cheaper and easier.

April's SLAS Technology is now available
April's Edition of SLAS Technology Features Cover Article, 'CURATE.AI: Optimizing Personalized Medicine with Artificial Intelligence'.

Technology in higher education: learning with it instead of from it
Technology has shifted the way that professors teach students in higher education.

Post-lithium technology
Next-generation batteries will probably see the replacement of lithium ions by more abundant and environmentally benign alkali metal or multivalent ions.

Rethinking the role of technology in the classroom
Introducing tablets and laptops to the classroom has certain educational virtues, according to Annahita Ball, an assistant professor in the University at Buffalo School of Social Work, but her research suggests that tech has its limitations as well.

The science and technology of FAST
The Five hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope (FAST), located in a radio quiet zone, with the targets (e.g., radio pulsars and neutron stars, galactic and extragalactic 21-cm HI emission).

Read More: Technology News and Technology Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.