Vehicle weight is a crucial factor when it comes to an electric car’s efficiency and range. Having the ability to accurately determine environmental factors and vehicle payload at any time also means being able to provide precise forecasts for range and optimal route navigation. Under a new EU directive, all commercial vehicles also need to have a device to determine weight on board in order to be registered in the EU, starting in May 2021.
The approach taken by FEV – a globally leading service provider for vehicle and drive train development – is cost efficient and precise. “Our in-house software solution analyzes vehicle sensor data, correlates it, and compares it with a dynamic vehicle model that is also based on sensor data,” said Dr. Thomas Hülshorst, group vice president electronics & electrification at FEV. “This means that compared to other approaches, FEV’s solution is affordable, is flexible, and can be integrated into any vehicle type – whether a gas vehicle, an e-vehicle, a compact car, or a truck. What ultimately matters is that the algorithms are accurately calibrated for the specific vehicle.”
The gross vehicle weight needs to be precisely determined for various areas of application. For instance, range can be determined very accurately for e-vehicles, and FEV’s system allows for an optimized operating strategy for everything from energy management to navigation routing and charging strategy. This truly enhances end user comfort and thus creates another selling point.
In addition to this, FEV’s solution helps fleet operators to accurately map out their fleet strategy. In the supplier industry in particular, weight load, recipient addresses, and traffic conditions can be used to generate automated dynamic routes and thus reduce costs for energy and staffing. On top of this, all commercial vehicles sold in the EU need to have an integrated, permanently installed system to determine gross vehicle weight as of May 2021, pursuant to a new EU directive. By eliminating additional cost intensive hardware, the Aachen (Germany) based company offers a genuine alternative to other solutions.
FEV’s system has already been tested in real applications and operating scenarios. “Our engineers have successfully tested and calibrated numerous vehicle types as well as trailer, tire, and axle configurations combined with various powertrain setups,” said Dr. Hülshorst. “We therefore are very pleased that the automobile industry is showing great interest in our solution.”
The software has been successfully integrated and tested in various vehicle types in collaboration with leading manufacturers in the passenger vehicle and truck segment. The algorithms are currently undergoing further development and validation for use in series production of the next generation of vehicles.